Grafton Quarter in Croydon is an ambitious £25M project aimed at transforming a declining two-acre industrial site into an outstanding mixed-use scheme. The resulting development features an innovative creative hub with circa 20,000 sq ft of artist studios and 97 residential units and is an impressive addition to this upcoming area.
Initial design reports conducted by a Fire Engineer recommended a mechanical ventilation system for each of the 8-storey residential blocks and set out some key requirements for same. The smoke ventilation system would need to provide adjustable flow rates to run in escape mode and firefighting mode. The control system would be linked to the central fire alarm via interfaces and Fireman Priority Switches within the stairway on each level. It was also identified during the planning phase that the central boiler systems were constructed to run through the mechanical risers, and therefore it was necessary to additionally facilitate temperature control for these areas.
Working closely with key stakeholders on the project, Sertus delivered a standout solution that answered all the technical specifications contained within the brief as well as blending seamlessly with the contemporary aesthetic of the building itself.
We designed a fully integrated system, utilising CFD analysis, certified to BS EN 12101-3, working with Building Regulations Approved Document B and industry guidance BS9991. One mechanical ventilation unit was installed per building, incorporating controls over various floor vents and electrical invertors within the control system to adjust extract flow rates. These invertors vary the fan speed, allowing the system to be run at various levels of output in the event of fire. Additional comfort fans, designed to run continuously at a lower speed for energy efficiency, were installed, as well as additional dampers – providing comfort ventilation for 6 out of the 8 floors in each unit. The adaptive controls allow the comfort functionality to be shut down in the event of fire. The completed installation was fully commissioned and delivered in line with building sign-off targets and to the complete satisfaction of the customer.
The installation of a bespoke mechanical ventilation shaft system represents a future-proofed solution that delivers superior safety performance for residents at Grafton Quarter, whilst simultaneously enhancing the overall quality of life within this forward-thinking development thanks to improved air quality and advanced comfort ventilation functionality. The adaptive controls enable the system to be adjusted or overridden in the event of an emergency while achieving excellent energy efficiency and cost-effectiveness in day-to-day use. Smart technology means the system is unobtrusive and quiet.
Crucially, the system offers assured compliance to Building Regulations Approved Document B, BS 9991 for ventilation of areas in apartment buildings.