Name: University of East Anglia (UEA) Central Library (extension)

Facts and Figures

Architect: Ramboll Whitbybird
Client: UEA
Completion: 2004
Value: 5m
Construction: steel frame, exposed concrete
Services provided: structural engineering, infrastructural engineering

Further Information

A steel frame with exposed concrete soffits was used to create a six storey extension to Lasduns UEA Central Library in Norwich.

The scheme is part of a phased extension to the UEA central library which houses a considerable book collection. The final phase will see the original scheme by Lasdun doubled in size.

An inventive approach was taken to establish floor loading to support book stack loading. The existing collection with Lasdun library was surveyed and by calculation it was proved that the existing floor loading allowance could be reduced from 9KN/m2 to 6.5KN/m2. This approach enabled reductions in the steel frame tonnage and foundation loading.

Prior to construction detailed surveys were required to establish the position of HV cables buried on site. Close tolerance piling was necessary in order to eliminate costly cable diversion.

Fire protection of the exposed steel frame was achieved through a mix of intumescent paint and concrete filled circular steel columns.

Steel beams were set up inside the depth of the concrete floor to maximise floor to ceiling heights and give the best natural daylight possible. This detail also enables the elimination of fire protection to the steel beams.

Foundation loads were reduced by incorporating polystyrene void formers in the concrete Omnia planks. These concrete planks were cast off site in steel mounds. The high quality concrete finish obtained was exposed to utilise the thermal mass, regulating the internal environment.

Part of the primary steelwork was delivered to site with the final balustrading already fixed in placed. This was used as temporary leading edge protection during the erection of the frame.


Downloadable Images (click to download)