Places For People Group Headquarters, Preston

Project: Places For People Group Headquarters, Preston

A gloomy unappealing entrance at The Pavilions in Preston has been transformed with the installation of a light, spacious and draught proof curved lobby from GEZE UK, the UK’s leading manufacturer of door and window control systems.

GEZE’s Slimdrive SC curved sliding automatic doors were specified by architects Summers-Inman to create a stunning focal point and welcoming entrance in the extended reception at the Places For People Group’s headquarters.

The property management firm commissioned the entrance as part of the refurbishment of its Preston offices. The spherical shaped lobby is designed to maximise space and light and features two sets of automatic bi-parting curved sliding glass doors. As well as aesthetics, one of the primary aims of the project was environmental control; a key benefit of a lobby is that it maintains air temperature providing a comfortable environment for staff, while meeting the highest efficiency standards.

Places For People also wanted to control access to the building so the outer doors allow visitors into the lobby, while the inner doors are activated by the company’s reception staff. Kaz Spiewakowski, managing director of GEZE UK, explained that Summers Inman chose an elliptical entrance because it provided the perfect solution for access control.

Kaz said: “Summers Inman wanted to create an unusual and stylish entrance, but one that would also be both modern and practical.  Installing curved doors can increase the size of the entrance by up to 40 per cent compared to sliding doors, making them ideal for entrances with controlled access, as visitors are able to enter the lobby area yet don’t feel cramped.”

The entrance was specifically designed to complement the shape of the building, which is angled with the entrance positioned at its heart, as well as allowing for pedestrian traffic flow.  The doors and leaves are formed from GEZE’s ISO Slim profile sections and powder coated in RAL 5013 cobalt blue and glazed with 10mm clear laminated safety glass. In addition, glazed side screens are positioned on each door.

Both sets of doors are powered by GEZE’s energy-efficient Slimdrive SC, a curved automatic door operator which is both sleek in appearance and extremely quiet in operation. Part of GEZE’s popular Slimdrive range, the operators are just 7cm high so they can be mounted almost invisibly, making them the ideal choice for this stylish new entrance.  They have also been designed and tested to meet the requirements of all relevant standards and regulations, including Building Bulletin 93, Approved Documents B and M, as well as assisting with the vigorous demands of the Equality Act.

Speaking about the new entrance, Dan Tipping, Building Surveyor at Summers-Inman said: “As well as looking dated the original reception had manual doors meaning staff had to get up to let visitors in, and it was cold in winter and hot in summer. The new circular lobby has created a stylish modern entrance that compliments the design of the extension and perfectly meets the company’s needs.”