Natural light and ventilation

Ninety-four Fieger louvre windows installed at the Banbridge Health and Care Centre allow natural light and ventilation to permeate the building and provide visual connection with landscaped courtyards and gardens.

The building has been recognised by Riba with national and regional awards for its design that engages with the surrounding landscape.

Architects Kennedy FitzGerald in association with Avanti Architects faced a challenging brief that required the new centre to provide facilities for community outpatients clinics, daycare accommodation for adults with disabilities and administrative offices for the Southern Health and Social Care Trust, all under one roof.

The new centre is constructed on the site of the old Banbridge Hospital and Workhouse. Enabling works were required to clear the site of existing buildings and contamination. Significant level changes across the site were viewed as an exciting opportunity to realise the brief by stepping the accommodation.

The Fieger louvre windows ensure high visibility, and while allowing ventilation, the windows also promote energy conservation. Being double glazed units achieve a U-value of 2.1-2.3 W/m²K and have a certified air infiltration rate of 0.4m³/hour/m², so that heat is conserved during winter months.

The ventilated louvres use Cool-Lite SKN165 glazing from Saint-Gobain, delivering a 65% reduction in solar heat gain. Electrical actuation of the louvres, by compact D&H linear motors, built unobtrusively into the side frames, is operated under the control of the building management system for automated comfort setting. Motors have anti-trap protection to reverse movement if resistance is sensed on closure. The aluminium framed louvre units are incorporated within the curtain wall structure and have a matching finish.