The flagship University of Salford New Adelphi Building is a 17,160m2 GIA multi-purpose facility, bringing together the School of Music, Performance and Art & Design; a first in the University’s 120-year history.
Playing a crucial role in fostering closer links with Salford’s Media City and providing talented graduates ready for industry, the building is part of the wider vision for a more integrated campus.
The building delivers an elegantly simple, thoughtful and efficient structural solution, exceeding client’s expectations. Chris Large, University Estate Director: “[Ramboll has been] very good at understanding our requirements, using their expertise to be innovative in the design process. The design of the New Adelphi Building is transformational in terms of the estate.”
Housing a triple height, 350 seat theatre, 35 acoustically isolated rooms, workshops and 10,000m2 collaboration space, the varied room typologies provide a multipurpose adaptable building, accommodating needs of today, with forethought for the future.
One of the building’s most striking features is the 24m cantilevered corner and 29m bridging structure that allows a large column-free thoroughfare (named the Broadwalk) to cut through the building. The Broadwalk provides an attractive gateway for staff and students travelling to and from Salford Crescent railway station and the campus.
Offsite construction enabling large open spaces
Use of offsite construction techniques played an important role in minimizing construction costs and enabling the more unusual features of the building, in particular the large open spaces. Offsite manufacture allowed Ramboll to keep onsite welding and fabrication to a minimum reducing build time and safety risks while improving quality. Furthermore, the building’s exposed structural flat soffits maximise thermal performance and allow for future flexibility while minimising service installation costs
The building’s lower levels designed using in situ reinforced concrete helped achieve robust acoustic detailing to satisfy the recording studios’ stringent sound performance requirements. The acoustic floors are fully isolated using box-in-a-box construction, with the acoustic slab supported via acoustically dampened pad feet onto in situ slabs.
Internally the building maintains its character with three 12m striking ‘V’ shaped columns, visible in the building’s foyer and two in situ staircases with bespoke structural arrangements of steps and large landings, creating additional meeting areas.
The building’s on target to achieve BREEAM Excellent, achieved by sound design techniques and a collaborative and considered approach at design stage.
Collaborative design team
Ramboll worked closely with the design team and contracting teams, adopting rigorous control procedures to ensure that the university received a building of outstanding quality. BIM model co-ordination facilitated early identification and resolution of clashes between structural, services and architectural elements. This ensured efficiency of the design process was maximised and supported the design team’s communication and synchronisation of design decisions.