McMullen Facades’ investment in manufacturing and off-site construction is taking design innovation to the next level
Crossrail Place, Canary Wharf, London, by Foster & Partners
In a sector that has been traditionally dominated by European facade contractors, McMullen Facades’ growing portfolio of projects in the high-rise residential market is breaking new ground in more ways than one. As part of the established and experienced building envelope contractor Lakesmere Group, McMullen Facades has established itself as the only UK-based specialist contractor equipped to design, manufacture and install specialist glass facades for projects above 40 storeys.
After establishing a dedicated presence in London, Lakesmere Group’s expertise and capabilities has continued to develop in line with the city’s ever-changing skyline. With both McMullen and Lakesmere playing key roles in the creation of some of London’s most iconic landmarks and major infrastructure projects, such as the redevelopment of the former Olympic Stadium, Heathrow Airport’s Terminal 2, and several Crossrail contracts, including Foster & Partners’ Canary Wharf station, the McMullen Facades team has also created a niche position for itself in the high-rise residential market.
Two Fifty One, Southwark, London, by Allies & Morrison
McMullen’s well-known head for heights has led to the facade specialist’s appointment to work on some of the highest high-risers in the capital, including delivering the full vertical envelope to two of Elephant and Castle’s most significant new developments: Allies & Morrison’s 41-storey Two Fifty One scheme, and The Highwood, Allford Hall Monaghan Morris’ 31-storey residential tower in Elephant Park. Repeat business with major players such as Canary Wharf Contractors has also seen McMullen securing its tallest order to date – a contract to deliver a bespoke unitised facade system to a new landmark 42-storey residential development by Stanton Williams, which forms part of the wider regeneration of London’s Wood Wharf.
Off-site and in-house
Key to McMullen Facades’ success in the London high-rise market is the quality and range of the company’s in-house services. Many clients and architects have seen the value of working with a specialist that can address the full scope of the building envelope from design, manufacture and installation. As well as helping to provide a greater degree of reliability in these unsettled times, investment in the specialist’s in-house manufacturing capabilities has also increased the use of off-site construction techniques.
McMullen Facades’ new manufacturing facility in Portadown, Northern Ireland
The central hub for most of the company’s off-site work in the UK is McMullen Facades’ new manufacturing facility in Portadown, Northern Ireland. Now three-times the size of the previous facility, it has recently benefited from additional investment in machinery, automation and handling equipment to increase capacity and production. From here McMullen is able to produce and distribute specialist facade solutions to contracts across the country. This ongoing investment programme has helped establish McMullen Facades as the UK’s major manufacturer of unitised facade solutions.
Hawkins Brown’s Here East development in London’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
Breaking the mould
Investment in its in-house manufacturing capabilities has enabled McMullen Facades to push the boundaries in terms of facade design and the benefits of this have also been felt outside of the high-rise residential market. Designed by Hawkins Brown, the Here East development in London’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is just one example of how the specialist has been able to create bespoke solutions through a manufactured product. As the first project to use the process of printing 2D frit pattern drawings directly on to glass, Here East features over 3000 individual glazed panels that each feature a unique design comprising over eight million ceramic dots that cascade at different diagonal angles.
The delivery of such technically complex facade projects is supported by extensive expertise and experience, with McMullen Facades’ 70-strong design team of technical managers, structural engineers, façade engineers, thermal engineers and system designers being one of the largest in-house teams in Europe.
North East Quadrant, Regent’s Pace, London, by Stephen Marshall Architects and Tate Hindle
Onwards and upwards
For architects who want to work with a UK-based facade specialist that can offer a designated point of contact, from estimation and design to procurement and delivery of the product to site, McMullen Facades has established itself as a highly credible alternative to European facade contractors. With a proven track record of delivering highly complex and bespoke facades and building envelope solutions to a variety of high-profile high-rise projects, McMullen’s investment in off-site techniques and in-house expertise is helping architects to take modern building design to new heights.
For more information visit the McMullen Facades website