Steel windows provide mews with an urban aesthetic
Formerly a disused eighties office building, Opal Mews (www.opalmews.com) is a development in North West London, by Clifton Securities, which comprises of five contemporary homes. Nominated for a Civic Trust award, the three-and five-bedroom properties with light-filled, open plan interiors owe much of their success to the 60 steel windows and six large double door sets manufactured and installed by Steel Window Association, Member REA Metal Windows.
To create Opal Mews, Clifton Securities stripped the structure back to the concrete frame and removed the original uPVC windows. The new steel windows were manufactured by REA Metal Windows using W40 sections while the door sets are tubular steel with the largest measuring over 2.5m wide and 2.3m high.
Each of the steel frames was hot dip galvanised and then finished in a factory-applied, and maintenance-free, polyester powder coating in RAL 7012 matt grey. This provides a crisp, industrial aesthetic that contrasts well with the various pastel coloured renders to the front facade of the mews. Each of the steel windows is glazed with high-performance argon gas-filled units that have centre pane U-value of 1.2W/m²k.
The W40 system, available from Steel Window Association members, offers full compliance with Part L of the 2013 Building Regulations so may be employed for new build and refurbishment projects. The range includes doorsets and screens and the profile accommodates 28mm thick insulated glazing units. This means triple glazing becomes an option. From a life cycle perspective W40 windows are extremely durable and should have a life span of at least eighty years. The main elements of a steel window are ultimately completely recyclable and are recognised by the BRE ‘Green Guide’, which gives them an above average B rating.
Simeon Anderson, Development Director of Clifton Securities, comments: “As designers and developers, we like the honest aesthetic of existing buildings and the classic industrial look of steel windows is very appealing in urban environments where prolific natural light is welcome. I went to Liverpool to meet with the team at REA Metal Windows and they were great; really good right through the whole process and they helped us tailor some fantastic solutions.”