With views across the River Mersey and the city’s UNESCO world heritage site, Exhibition Centre Liverpool is the newest addition to the existing Arena and Convention Centre (ACC) Liverpool, already home to the BT Convention Centre and Echo Arena.
With an ElitePLUS 4 acoustic roof system, the recently-built venue has already been earmarked for a range of exhibitions, from medical wound care to cruise holidays and wedding shows. Acoustic and thermal performance were key aspects of the building’s performance so it is not surprising that the overall roof construction provides 45dB sound reduction and thermal transmittance of just 0.15W/m2K.
The Euroseam® outer profile used on this system is mechanically fixed by folding the seams on each edge of the sheet over a stainless steel halter, which is attached to the building structure via the Quattro spacer, which is fixed through the liner sheet into purlins attached to the main structure of the building. Euroseam® forms the outer layer of the ElitePLUS roof, combining with insulation, the MW5 Liner and Quattro as the main constituent parts.
The MW5 liner profile was supplied in black; not a typical liner colour. Bright white or High Reflective colours are usually employed on the inside of metal roof and wall systems to maximise natural daylight and reduce energy consumption from artificial lighting. But in this case a black finish is understandable, providing an influential element in the control of ambient and spot lighting at such a venue; all but eliminating unwanted reflections during performance and theatre events. It also matches the design of the colour scheme, which runs from outside the building to the interior, with a striking monochrome palette that contributes to the clean, modern aesthetics.
To top it all off the Euroseam® profile on the outside of the roof was an ideal substrate for an expanse of photovoltaic (PV) systems. Euroclad partnered with Solar Advanced Systems, who managed the installation of PV panels covering almost the entire roof. The PVs were attached to a pitched framework to provide the optimal angle for solar energy capture. The framework was anchored to the roof using a special Euroclad clamp, which avoids sheet penetrations, whilst providing a secure anchor. The 250KW PV system formed part of the overall ‘energy from envelope’ ethos, combining with excellent thermal insulation to help minimise the environmental impact of the building.
It is estimated that the venue will bring some £40 million to the wider local economy – equal to the amount invested by Liverpool City Council – and support some 1,300 jobs. Having invested in such a significant building, it is important that it endures. It will do so by being flexible enough to suit wide-ranging requirements. This was at the forefront of the minds of architects Denton Corker Marshall when considering the design, which influenced the choice of materials and finishes from the start.
With a total useable floor area of 16,300m2, courtesy of fully retractable walls, the 8,100m2 exhibition space has the facility to be divided into three interlinked, column-free, 2,700m2 halls, one of which having an elevated roof of 18m to accommodate full stage shows and exhibitions requiring increased height.
With major events already booked even before the venue was finished, The Exhibition Centre, Liverpool has a bright future ahead.