voestalpine Metsec plc has provided its Metframe pre-panelised steel-framing product for a new Travelodge hotel on the Thetford Riverside Development in Norfolk. The use of modern methods of construction allowed efficiency savings to be made and ensured the initial build phase of the project was completed within budget and to tight deadlines.
Thetford Travelodge is a 62-room hotel and is part of a 41,000 sq ft redevelopment of the riverside area in Thetford, which will also see the construction of a three-screen cinema and five restaurants. Opened in Autumn 2016, the investment into modern retail and leisure facilities represents a key part of overall renovation plans for Thetford town centre.
Work on the project began in June 2015 with Metsec product installed onsite by approved Metframe installer Vietchi Interiors in just eight weeks between December 2015 and February 2016. The Metframe load bearing walls and concrete floors formed the top three storeys of the hotel building. The acoustic properties of the hotel’s building structure were an important factor in the design process to prevent sound travelling between rooms and having a negative impact on overall guest experience. The concrete floors specified as part of the Metframe design provided the high levels of acoustic insulation required.
Metsec was engaged early on in the tender process to help assess the foundation and loading requirements of the building, establish a value engineered plan and achieve any savings possible.
The Metframe solution was selected due to the structural efficiency of the system and manufacturing the product offsite contributed to a fast build, allowing that section of the project to be completed to a tight schedule. Value engineering the structure resulted in key savings. For example, reduced weight allowed the use of shallower foundations, which reduced the amount of materials required and the overall cost of the building. Metsec’s SFS in-fill walling was also selected for use on the adjacent cinema building.
Colin Kennedy, Managing Director at Vietchi Interiors said “With the Metframe product we were able to achieve exactly what the client required on time and within budget despite challenges presented by the winter weather and a location where access was limited by proximity to the river. Metframe was chosen for this project due to the greater stability and fire resistance of the system compared with alternatives such as a timber-frame kit construction.”
The pre-panelised Metframe system is a lightweight steel structure designed to meet the demands of the modern construction environment. The cold rolled sections are manufactured in precise lengths and the panels are then assembled off-site.
Stairs and lift shafts are an integral part of the Metframe system and are installed as each floor is constructed. This removes the need to rely on external scaffold for access to upper levels, providing convenience and added speed to the erection sequence.
Phillip Browne, Contracts Manager from Farrans Construction concluded: “The Thetford Riverside development required a high quality solution that would meet the required acoustic, fire and insulation u-Values. Metframe ticked all these boxes and represented a solution that could streamline the construction process while maintaining high levels of build quality. The build of the hotel went exactly as expected. It was simple and straightforward, the panels came straight off the delivery in the correct sequence and were lifted into place.”