Architect Bennetts Associates, working with design engineer Parsons Brinckerhoff, have designed the new West Coast Rail Traffic Control Centre in Birmingham, which controls all train signalling and operations between London Euston and Crewe.
Built by Birse Construction Limited, the facility is the workplace for some 140 staff, and operates 24 hours per day, 365 days per year.
Working closely with Birse Construction, Colt provided a Solarfin fixed solar shading system comprising a series of 300mm wide extruded aluminium fins mounted horizontally at 300mm centres between structural support steelwork.
To accommodate the 9000mm bays, the centres of the fins were also supported by a series of vertical stainless steel drop rods suspended at the head from a gallows bracket attached to the main roof trusses.
To complete the solar shading and reduce glare, Colt also installed a series of motorised Helioscreen Roller Blinds, fitted both above and below the mezzanine floor. The blinds were fitted between the fin boxes of the structural glazing with brushed stainless steel brackets, with a maximum blind dimension of approximately 1800mm wide - 7000mm drop. The control of the blinds is via a simple motor down/motor up switch.