February 2013 issue

With the Green Deal now officially underway following its launch on 28th January, retrofitting energy efficient solutions is receiving considerable exposure. Solid wall insulation and boilers are among the leading solutions on offer for widespread building improvements, including retrofitting in social housing. Despite the system’s announcement soon after the coalition took office, the ambitious plan to cut carbon emissions and reduce energy bills has received insufficient backing to date, in part due to the homeowner’s perceived risk of associated costs and lack of information available from providers.

Challenges in retrofitting, however, aren’t always down to the building occupant. In many cases, it is the building that poses the major obstacle. Improvements can be restricted by heritage regulations or, more frustratingly, the renovations cannot be accommodated in the building’s original form.

In this month’s issue, FC&A profiles two projects that have worked against listed and complex structures to not only meet a concise brief, but provide a long-lasting efficient solution. The first details the refurbishment of Picton Reading Room, as part of a £50m redevelopment of Liverpool Central Library. CMS Danskin was asked to make significant improvements to the acoustic performance but was severely hindered by the elaborate saucer dome. Thankfully, advances in its acoustic plaster spray meant it could access the limited surface area. Readers can find out more on page 34.

Meanwhile, the revival of a prestigious office development was met with challenges due to the heritage external facades. With limited alterations allowed to the building’s envelope, Morgan Sindall’s experienced team transformed the heart of the building to create a contemporary open space at its centre.

For a thorough overview of the building solutions assisting renovations and improving efficiency, turn to our product showcase from page 46 or better still, make Ecobuild a firm fixture in the event calendar. Taking place from 5-7th March, Ecobuild is the world’s largest event for sustainable design and construction. Inside this issue we pay tribute to a whole host of companies set to exhibit new launches and product innovation.

I hope you enjoy this issue and look forward to seeing many of you at the upcoming Ecobuild event. Please feel free to drop by and say hello to the team on stand N10.

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Future Constructor & Architect is a specification platform for architects and building contractors, which focuses on top-end domestic and commercial developments.

As well as timely industry comment and legislation updates, the magazine covers recent projects and reviews the latest sustainable building products on the market. Subscribe here.

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