Somerville House Refurb makes way for Academic Growth

Australia - South Brisbane
Thomson Adsett

Australia - South Brisbane

Promat Australia provide cost effective fire-resistant solutions for Class 9B building floor systems

Designed by ThomsonAdsett and constructed by Badge Constructions, the new $4.8 million Somerville House, Seymour Library redevelopment project, was redesigned with the objective to revive and invigorate the existing infrastructure whilst establishing Somerville House as an education leader institution.

Chad Brown, Architect and Group Director of Education at ThomsonAdsett says “The brief was to more effectively accommodate enrolment growth and create additional flexible learning areas. We’ve designed dedicated study spaces, meeting rooms and an Academic Research Centre, which will provide the opportunity for increased student exhibitions and collaboration.”

Consisting of timber joists systems, the design included two mezzanine levels, which increased the existing library space by 537m2. A range of timber and glass fixtures were incorporated into the new internal design to compliment the existing structure.

The design team saw great opportunities with both the height and the volume of the existing building. Although considerations needed to be made to ensure the Building Code of Australia Class 9B passive fire rating classifications were met for multi-storey buildings of a public nature.

Building refurbishments incur many dynamic challenges, some of these challenges include fire rating the new areas and finding solutions to joining new fittings to existing materials without exceeding budget expectations.

Following extensive research and fire testing, Promat were able to work with Michael Greenwood of Walker Bai Engineers to create a cost efficient new floor system designed for the lightweight floor requirements of this construction. The SYSTEMPANEL™ floor system was used over approximately 800m2, complying with fire and acoustic requirements achieving a Fire Resistance Level (FRL) of 120/120/120.

The SYSTEMPANEL™ floor system was a cost effective, light weight material, permitting easy installation. An ideal outcome for the builders compared to the cost and complexity of pumping concrete slabs into the multi-level story.

Promat were also able to assist with fire stopping of penetrations and joint sealings. PROMATECT® 100 provided a single layer system for walls, ceilings and steel protection. The unique design of the PROMATECT® 100 allows for the following performance enhancements:
• Superior insulation properties when exposed to fire
• Excellent workability - easy to use and cut
• Smooth and flat surface design
• Cost efficient allowing time saving on labour costs

Construction was completed in December 2017.