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Ambulatory and diagnostic centre, Middlesex Hospital

Avanti Architects

A facade with tapered eaves, string course and cedar panels

The section and facade (shown right) is of a two-storey part of the new centre which contains orthodontal facilities on the ground floor and recovery rooms on the first floor. The structure, a concrete frame and slab with profiled soffit, supports a roof of steel trusses. To encourage recovery, the first floor has been designed as a light and airy space, a continuous roof lantern runs at the ridge. The trusses form inverted triangles at each side of it. The bottom booms of the trusses slope upwards to glazed clerestories at the eaves, lined with a plasterboard ceiling which provides a plenum for services.

The profiled aluminium roof is supported by channel purlins resting on the trusses. At the eaves the line of the ceiling is extended to a tapered edge. The component parts of gutter, soffit, fascia and trim were prefabricated in pressed aluminium and are supported by steel brackets. Below the eaves the clerestory glazing is set in aluminium angles and secured with channels.

At first floor slab level the facade is divided by a recessed aluminium string course. Above it the facade comprises an inner leaf of blockwork and an outer leaf of Sto insulated render system, with projecting bay windows of silicone-jointed double-glazed units. The outer leaf of the lower facade is of reconstructed stone blocks. They frame a series of openings, each of which contain a pair of aluminium- framed windows separated by a panel of profiled cedar boarding. Each panel is edged with a stainless steel angle to give a clean profile, especially at itsvertical junctions with the windows. The sill is formed of recessed blocks to provide a shadow-line.

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