Kalwall® translucent cladding, exclusively available in the UK and Ireland from Structura UK Ltd, has helped transform a former marble processing plant into an amazing space for the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, USA.
Designed by Cope Associates, the new Facilities Services Complex has totally revitalised and refreshed the original 1908 building and the use of Kalwall has helped the projects LEED Silver Certification. The project has proved so successful it was named the Collegiate Citation winner for historic preservation in American School and University’s annual Educational Interiors Showcase Award.
The interior of this 8,500 sq metre building is now bathed with diffused daylight through the Kalwall panels fitted into the original clerestory encircling the central hall. The Kalwall keeps the interior free from glare and hotspots and the stark contrasts of light and shade. It also specifically helps the computer users by keeping direct sunlight and glare off their screens making it more restful and reducing eye fatigue.
Furthermore, Kalwall’s insulation properties mean ‘U’ Values of up to 0.28 W/m2K can be achieved. This is as energy efficient as a normal cavity wall and four times better than insulated glass units. Therefore there is less of a demand for artificial heating and cooling, while the translucence reduces the need for artificial lighting.
Kalwall is a popular choice for retrofit projects. The strong and lightweight panels are factory prefabricated to the exact size needed for each project. They are easily be retrofitted into existing spaces and can often use the existing substrate saving both time and money on removal and new fabrication. This, coupled with the low maintenance colour stable, UV resistant and self-cleaning surface, has the additional advantage that ongoing maintenance is kept to a minimum thereby avoiding cost and disruption.
Photo: Genna Sellers