A stone ramp with a glass balustrade
The TUC Headquarters, a Grade II*-listed building completed in 1958, was designed with a rich palette of materials.
At the main entrance, grey York stone steps lead to a Sicilian marble-floored vestibule, sheltered by a canopy and flanked by a facade of bronze-framed glazed screens with mosaic-tiled columns set between them.
The entrance areas have been restored and a new ramp has been built to give access to the disabled. It replaces a relatively steep ramp, clad in slate and positioned intrusively at right angles to the facade.
The new ramp runs parallel and just in front of the facade to one side of the entrance. It is built of materials sympathetic to the original concept; the grey York stone comes from the same quarry - Whinney Hill - as the original.A balustrade of clear toughened 15mm glass allows the bronze-framed glazed screens of the facade to be clearly visible through it.
The glass slots into a dwarf concrete wall clad with grey York stone, which forms a seamless extension to the vestibule plinth, identical in height and materials.The wall is flanked by granite kerbs inset with uplighters.A 40mm stainlesssteel handrail is fixed to the glass balustrade panels, the matching handrail on the other side rests on 40 x 15mm posts.
The cast in-situ concrete ramp is paved with 50mm-thick slabs of grey York stone.All joints - between stone slabs, dwarf wall cladding, glass balustrade panels and granite kerbs - precisely match the geometry of the circular columns and bronze-framed glazed screens behind.To emphasise the geometry and to give added grip, the joints between the stone slabs on the ramp are infilled with 15mm stainless-steel flats.