working details: A timber roof with stainless steel shingles
The centre is a single-storey building with a 10m-high tower on the north-west corner next to the main entrance. The tower is LVL (laminated veneer lumber) structure clad with render. The external walls are of conventional cavity brickwork construction; the roof takes the form of a series of semi-folded plates, clad with stainless steel shingles, which oversail the walls, in some cases by almost 3 metres.
The roof is covered with 1,800 x 600 x 0.5mm stainless steel shingles with an 'angel-hair' finish - a treatment similar to a brushed finish and specified by Gehry to deflect light. The shingles were laid in a staggered arrangement with a 1:3 lap and screwed to stainless steel sheet fixing clips and steel plates.
The shingles lie on an acoustic mat and a bituminous felt waterproof membrane, which was torched onto a series of 400 x 400 x 80mm foamed glass slabs. The slabs are bonded to a structural ply deck, a double layer of 12mm sprucefaced ply sheet with staggered joints.
The roof structure is formed of 360 x 75mm LVL ridge and valley beams with 145 x 45mm treated softwood purlins spanning between them. The ply deck braces the roof structure and its soffit is exposed as the ceiling finish.
The LVL beams rest on a series of SHS posts set within the wall cavities. The edge of the roof is trimmed with a 170 x 45mm LVL edge beam.
The erection sequence was as follows: the SHS posts were installed and the roof structure was fixed to them and temporarily braced. The brickwork was built up around the posts and cut to accommodate projecting purlins and beams. The junctions were filled with elastomeric sealant and flexible packers to allow for movement.