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Make models: 20 Ropemaker Street, part 3
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Make models: 20 Ropemaker Street, part 3

刊登 17.06.2019
Make modelshop

Client Old Park Lane Management Ltd and CO-RE
Scale 1:1
Dimensions 425mm(l) x 380mm(w) x 1610mm(h)
Time to make 1 week
Materials 3D-printed PLA, paper card, acrylic
Model-makers Paul Miles, Alex Stewart, Elliot Mayer (architectural assistant)

Today’s Model Monday blog is the last in a series of three about the different types of models we’ve made for our 20 Ropemaker Street project. This final instalment focuses on a 1:1 model of a spandrel panel. Click here for part 1 and here for part 2.

The project

20 Ropemaker Street is a 27-storey commercial tower on the edge of the City of London, just minutes from Moorgate Station. The building’s articulated, ‘folded’ form acts as a bookend to the new towers going up around CityPoint and creates a new public space on the corner of Ropemaker Street and Finsbury Pavement.

The design, which features a series of stepped slices that protrude forward and recess back, creates over 400,000ft2 of Grade A, BREEAM ‘Excellent’ office space across a range of floorplates that can accommodate different-sized businesses. With five roof terraces and balconies for most floorplates, nearly every floor has outdoor access.

The ground floor will house premium retail as well as a ‘community space’ in the main entrance for Ropemaker’s occupants. This area will feature a variety of work zones, breakout areas, event spaces and a coffee bar, all surrounded by plantings.

The model

The model came about towards the end of Stage 3 to mitigate concerns over the durability of the joint details and whether it would be possible to see through them to the sub-frame behind. So we made a series of isolated joint profile models to think through these issues, but quickly realised it had further potential, and decided to turn it into a full-sized spandrel, incorporating both a vertical movement joint and secondary panel joints.

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Each individual extrusion is made of 3D-printed components glued together and clad in a glossy paper card sprayed with the same paint as the 1:10 ceramic joint models featured in part 2 of the Ropemaker Model Monday series. We sprayed the inside edges of the panels black to reflect the building’s actual sub-frame, while clear acrylic at the top represents the window. This kind of model can take months if done externally, but we made it in-house within about a week.

The way we 3D printed the components can be thought of as a form of extrusion, as they each have the same linearity as the ceramic extrusion of the actual spandrel panels. In this way, the model does more than just represent the external appearance – it also reflects the form of manufacture.

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Now hanging proudly on the wall in our London studio, this 1:1 visual mock-up (VMU) has become instrumental in our discussions with the client, suppliers and design team – not to mention impressing our fellow Makers! Normally this kind of big mock-up is produced by suppliers and contractors post-tender, but we were one step ahead, allowing us to informally test the implications of the design, and allows for design developments prior to the official contractors VMU proposal. This is the kind of work that underscores the important role a full-service, in-house modelshop can play.