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Case Studies

8 Bishopsgate

Brown & Carroll




London, EC2N

Service Delivered

Design, manufacture and installation of SMI blind control systems to the town hall area and viewing gallery on Level 50 of 8 Bishopsgate, including blackout and screen fabrics, and a custom ceiling pocket.

Offering 52,900m2 of space, 8 Bishopsgate is one of the latest additions to the cluster of skyscrapers situated in London’s historic Square Mile.

The 50-storey building is home to offices, elevated terraces, a 200-seat auditorium, cafe and The Lookout; a free viewing gallery with panoramic views of London’s skyline.

Designed by WilkinsonEyre, 8 Bishopsgate is the tallest BREEAM Outstanding building in the UK.

The Requirement

We were contacted by fit out specialists Brown & Carroll to design, manufacture and install a motorised blackout solution for the 200-seat town hall and motorised system with screen fabric for the viewing gallery on Level 50.

Our Solution

Following a site visit and multiple design meetings to discuss the requirements set out within the architect’s specification, we proposed a full SMI system for the two areas.

The five-metre high fixing point required for Level 50 represented an interesting proposition due to the large roll-up diameter of the blind, and the blinds needed to align with the mullions perfectly. Meanwhile, there were significant challenges to overcome with regards to fixing details in both locations.

For the viewing gallery, we designed a custom 140mm ceiling pocket to accommodate for the large diameter of the RBXL-E blinds, and an enlarged closure plate for maximum concealment. Furthermore, the bespoke pocket was also manufactured with a custom RAL colour to match the façade.

Meanwhile, we semi-recessed 11 motorised blinds into the timber ceiling in the town hall area, linking the SMI system to the fire alarm. This ensured the blinds raise automatically in the event of a fire to allow a clear line of sight into the area for the emergency services.

As a full blackout was required in this area, we used SHY’s ZIP system with a C-Screen blackout fabric retained within zip side channels to prevent any light ingress.

Both systems used powerful Vestamatic motors for the blinds, operated by a Warema 16-motor controller linked via a KNX network. The control was integrated with MK style wall switches, finished to match the building specification and included local override.

Wide shot of the viewpoint at 8 Bishopsgate overlooking London

Project breakdown:

  • 11 motorised blackout blinds using SHY Zip system – zipped side channels to provide full blackout. SMI Vestamatic motor. C-Screen blackout fabric
  • 17 ShadeTech RBXL-E motorised blinds. SMI Vestamatic motor. BetaScreen 90 screen fabric 3% TV.
  • Warema 16-motor controller panels on a KNX network. Integrated with MK style wall switches finished to match the building specifications
  • Local override and town hall linked to fire alarm
  • 140mm x 140mm custom ceiling pocket with enlarged closure plate.

The Outcome

The project at 8 Bishopsgate highlighted the importance of working closely with Brown & Carroll, the architectural team, M&E and the ceiling fixers throughout the project.

From the initial site visit and design meetings, we were able to identify potential challenges early and ensure all involved were well prepared at the installation phase.

Project Director for Brown & Carroll, Stephen Hopkins, echoed this, stating:

“It was a pleasure engaging and working with Callum and his team through all stages of the project from initial design and sampling process through to installation and commissioning.”

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