High performance, single glazed timber windows have been replaced with double glazed products by Mumford & Wood in a substantial building at St Vincent Street, Glasgow. The project has been Highly Commended by the judges of the BWF’s inaugural Project of the Year Award 2008.

This refurbished property provides 3,488m2 of flexible, Grade A office accommodation arranged over six floors and consists of a retained B-listed Georgian-style façade constructed in the mid 19th Century, with a contemporary structure developed behind this façade in 1988. The building, which was a vacant property awaiting refurbishment, was completely stripped out in 2006 to leave an empty shell.

This high-specification refurbishment included the cleaning and restoration of the historical façade which now incorporates high performance, modern double-glazed sash timber windows made by Mumford & Wood. The building achieves a high BREEAM rating.

G D Lodge Architects of Glasgow and F&C Property Asset Management of Surrey, a commercial refurbishment specialist, were responsible for the application of four separate planning and listed building consents to the local authority and Historic Scotland of which a major element involved the replacement of single glazed windows with double glazed products. Both the local authority and Historic Scotland showed resistance to this proposal primarily citing the onerous width of astragals, or glazing bars, necessary to facilitate double glazed units.

GD Lodge and Mumford & Wood worked closely with the local authority who themselves argued the case for double glazed wood windows which would contribute to meeting the increasingly challenging targets of reduced energy consumption, and in doing so respond to government requirements in the reduction of carbon emissions and to meet the requirement of BREEAM assessment.

Mumford & Wood satisfied the brief by designing a double glazed timber product with infinitely slim, elegant 17mm glazing bars to match the original window, and provided a full size sample which was installed for inspection by the local authority and Historic Scotland. The product met all the requirements of performance and sustainability while achieving the traditional appearance and sightlines of the original windows in this period property.

Mumford & Wood produce energy rated, made to order, wooden windows to suit both traditional and contemporary designs. These products promote the elegance of timber which is a truly sustainable material and are widely used inn listed buildings and within conservation areas when a sensible and informed approach is taken. All windows are finished with three coats of water based paint.

“In a sensitive project such as this, positioned at the heart of Glasgow City Centre, one of our primary problems has been coping with the various bodies in the planning process and obtaining their responses,” says Brian Taylor, project architect with D Lodge Architects. “The innovation of Mumford & Wood’s design capability in working with wood means to me that there should never again be onerous, costly and time consuming debate over the replacement of single glazed windows with double glazed units.”

These extremely large windows, approximately 1400mm wide x 280mm high, are positioned in an internal curved stone reveal which meant that a traditional square English box detail could not be used. Mumford & Wood’s technical team designed a double glazed version of the Scottish detail which has an open box section. Simultaneously, they have recreated fine sight lines that replicate their single glazed predecessors while still incorporating double glazed units and weather-strip to satisfy our sustainability brief.

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