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Aesthetic and acoustic control

Michael Laird Architects and Reiach and Hall Architects complete a new engineering building for the City of Glasgow College using a Heradesign ceiling

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City of Glasgow College has opened the doors to its new £228 million city centre Riverside Campus designed and delivered by Michael Laird Architects (MLA) and Reiach and Hall Architects. A learning and teaching space for 40,000 students and 1,200 staff, the Riverside Campus contains nautical and engineering studies alongside accommodation for 200 students.

Within the multi-use building, Heradesign from Knauf AMF has been installed in the state-of-the art Nautical Engineering Hall. The Engineering Hall is a multi-functional environment with machinery operating and a number of tutorials taking place at the same time. Heradesign ceiling panels were chosen because they comply with Building Regulation BB93: acoustic design of schools and provide outstanding acoustic control in this potentially noisy space. Heradesign provides Class A sound absorption and helps control the ambient sound level, reduce reverberation and increase speech intelligibility, helping to create a productive learning environment for both lecturers and students.

Adam Frickleton, associate director, at MLA was also attracted to Heradesign for its aesthetic qualities: 'The Engineering Hall is an industrial space where raw and robust materials have been left exposed. We felt that the material quality of the Heradesign wood-wool range aligned with the intended design finish.'


Heradesign is manufactured from sustainably sourced wood-wool and has a naturally textured woven surface. The panels are available in a choice of fibres ranging from 1mm to 3mm thick, and in a number of different sizes and edge details. Heradesign is a versatile product, its surface can be colour matched to a wide range of custom colours from popular systems such as RAL, NCS or StoColor.

In the Engineering Hall, the ceiling is fitted above the lighting and ventilation system to give the roof area a utilitarian look. Heradesign can also incorporate ventilation and lighting in the same installation to reduce visual clutter. All Knauf AMF ceilings are fully demountable, making access and maintenance to the services in the void quick and simple.

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