Garden setting

Architectural glazing systems from Kawneer were used on the 19th and largest Maggie’s cancer care centre in the UK because they were ‘tried and trusted’.

Two types of Kawneer’s curtain walling were used on the centre at The Christie Hospital in south Manchester – AA100 SSG (structurally silicone glazed) for the triangular rooflights, with concealed actuators, and AA100 mullion-drained as vertical glazing.

These were complemented in aluminium by AA720 doors with bonded units to give a frameless appearance and AA3572 lift/slide doors to move large panes effortlessly.

The heavily glazed design of the Manchester centre by Foster + Partners aims to establish a domestic atmosphere in a garden setting and, appropriately, is first glimpsed at the end of a tree-lined street, a short walk from Christie’s and its leading oncology unit.

The building occupies a sunny site and is arranged over 1.5 storeys, keeping its profile low in keeping with the surrounding residential streets. The bronze-clad roof rises in the centre to create a mezzanine level, naturally illuminated by the triangular rooflights from Kawneer.

This is supported by lightweight timber lattice beams which also act alongside glazing as natural partitions between different internal areas, visually dissolving the architecture into the surrounding gardens.

The sliding glass doors by Kawneer open the timber-clad building up to a garden setting created by the award-winning Dan Pearson Studio. Each treatment and counselling room on the eastern facade faces its own private garden.

Project architect Darron Haylock said: “It was important that the building should fit in with its surroundings, and that the local community should feel like an integral part of the process. So we took them on the journey with us – meeting the planners on a regular basis. The feedback about the centre has been extremely positive. People have just really warmed to the building, they really enjoy the spaces.”

The building has won several awards including Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce’s Building of the Year, and two 2016 Wood awards (Structural) and the ‘Winner of Winners’ Arnold Laver Gold Award.