Enhanced feeling of space and light

Gx Glass supplied and installed a range of contemporary glass products to Birmingham’s Three Snowhill development, used to create striking effects in the reception area, lift lobbies and washroom facilities.

Three Snowhill is the third and final part of the Snowhill Plaza project and the largest of the three buildings on the site. The 19-storey building provides 36,657m2 of office space and more than 2,000m2 of retail and leisure space at ground level.

Matelac Silver Bronze glass by AGC, Optiwhite and Optimirror products were used on the project with a combined total of more than 2,500m2 of glass installed. The Matelac range is manufactured from optically clear glass and the effect is created through a combination of acid etching and a high-quality painted finish applied to the back, or in the case of the silver ranges, application of a mirror coating.

It provides a sophisticated satin finish in a range of 20 standard colours as well as bespoke options. For Three Snowhill, the Silver Bronze Safe+ option was selected for use on the walls of the atrium area and lift lobbies. Matelac Safe+ includes a polypropylene film on the painted rear surface of the glass. Not only does it protect the rear surface from scratches during installation but also ensures that if the glass breaks, the shards will stay in place to prevent further damage or injury.

In the double height atrium, the Matelac product was installed across large expanses of wall, in some areas the panels fit together to cover sections as much as 7m long and 8.5m high.

“We wanted to create a warm crisp inviting reception space at Three Snowhill filled with natural stone and timber materials that felt light and airy,” Barry Smith, associate at Sheppard Robson Architects, said.

Gx Glass also supplied and installed the Silver Bronze Safe+ Matelac, Optiwhite and Optimirror products in the washroom facilities and male and female changing rooms. The self-contained washroom units, which feature on each floor and consist of a toilet, vanity unit and hand-drying facilities, provide a unisex, space saving washroom solution. The mirrored panels enhance the feeling of space and light with a crisper, true colour reflection that creates a better overall visual result, while the Matelac continued the established aesthetic into these facilities.

The low iron Optiwhite product was used for the 10mm toughened shower screens installed in the shower room and toilet combination on every floor from the second to 17th.

Andrea Marston, market development and IBP manager at AGC, said: “We have a long-standing relationship with Gx Glass and made the recommendation to BAM and the client team based on the company’s extensive experience with glass processing and installation – something that was crucial on a project like Three Snowhill.”

At approximately £100 million, Snowhill was BAM’s largest development in Birmingham and completed in the company’s 150th anniversary year.