A COUNTDOWN OF MAPLE'S TOP 10 PROJECTS OVER THE LAST 40 YEARS

Posted by Amy Bradbury on 27/11/23 10:30
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We have whittled down thousands of projects from our four decades in business to ten of the most significant.

In the last forty years, we’ve collaborated with some great contractors and architects resulting in visually striking projects across the UK. To celebrate our forty-year anniversary, we’ve selected ten of the most significant projects:
 

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10. Vodafone HQ, Kampala

Not only was Vodafone HQ our first international supply-only order, but it was also our first brise soleil project. In 2003, we delivered Aurora 180 blades in crates along with drawings to Kampala, Uganda for installation. Vodafone HQ marks an important milestone as it paved the way for Maple Sunscreening to become an established name in the industry.
 
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9. Percy Gee Building, University of Leicester
 

In 2021, Maple gave the Percy Gee building a new lease of life by designing and installing 10-metre-high vertical blades. The 11 blades, each weighing 85 kilograms, were equipped with internal stiffening ribs and thermal-break brackets to enhance the building's thermal efficiency. The sheer scale of this project helped secure its place as number 9 on our countdown.

 
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8. Venus Building, Trafford

Venus Building was our flagship project of the early noughties. In 2005, Maple supplied and installed roller blinds for Venus Building in Trafford Park which has since been recognised as one of the best office developments in the country.

 
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7. Schrödinger Building, Oxford Science Park, Oxford

Arguably one of our finest brise soleil projects, 500mm solar screening blades were fitted to the Schrödinger Building in 2017, creating a large aerofoil canopy over the entrance. This particular project involved lots of collaboration with multiple parties in order to bring Bogle Architect’s vision to reality. Alongside contractors Britplas and Barnwood, we worked to create a seamless system which incorporated hidden fixings to achieve the original design intent.

 

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6. Broadmarsh Multi-storey, Nottingham

Our façade installation onto Broadmarsh Car Park in 2021 scored a well-deserved place on our top ten countdown because its striking design has earned it the classification of an ‘important city landmark’.

 Maple were responsible for the supply and installation of aluminium and Equitone rainscreen cladding, cast glass panels, terracotta tiles and aluminium fins onto the car park. It has since won the ‘Collaboration and Integration Award’ at the Constructing Excellence East Midlands Awards amongst several notable achievements.

 

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5. Salford A2 Multi-storey, Manchester

Salford’s A2 multi-storey featured individual ‘kite-shaped’ aluminium panels which took its inspiration from an Abu Dhabi skyscraper. The 2018 project required close collaboration between Maple’s technical design team and architects AHR in order to bring this creative vision to reality.

 Alongside providing an awe-inspiring addition to Salford’s skyline, the façade helps provide natural ventilation and protect nearby residential areas from light and noise pollution. 

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4. Victoria Gate Car Park, Leeds

Our pioneering twisted fin façade for Victoria Gate car park in Leeds has won several awards since its completion in November 2016, such as Yorkshire Building of the Year for 2017 by the Royal Institute of British Architects.

Our unique design creates an arrangement of diamonds in various sizes, creating a visually striking display. To create the diamond effect, each fin was twisted to a specific degree at an exact location and fixed with spring-loaded brackets to absorb any movement generated by the car park and prevent the fins from bending or breaking.

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3. Oxygen, Manchester

Oxygen has not only scored high on our countdown list, but at 109m in height, it is Maple’s highest-ever installation which means it rates highly in real life too. Over 2,700m sq m of rainscreen cladding was installed onto the modern residential building in the New Islington district alongside expanded mesh panels which provided texture and visual interest. 

The 32-storey Oxygen building was completed in 2022 and was named a ‘Once in a lifetime experience for everyone involved’ by project director Richard Sumner.

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2. UWE, Bristol

This year, Maple’s played an active role in part of the UK’s most significant Passivhaus development. We worked alongside main contractors VINCI Building to install rainscreen cladding onto three new accommodation blocks on the University of West of England’s Frenchay campus in Bristol.

The Aspect rainscreen façade system helps contribute to the project’s target of achieving the Passivhaus standard for net zero emissions through its innovative, patented design which reduces thermal conductivity and enhances U-values.

UWE’s pioneering project sets an exciting precedent for future, energy-saving developments which is why it has placed so highly on our list.

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1. Victoria Square Car Park, Woking

Our Woking project in 2021 has secured the top position on the countdown as it is one of our largest and most complex installations to date. It involved the use of tens of thousands of lengths of aluminium fins, powder-coated in four shades of black and grey, which clad each of the 45-meter-high car ramp towers of the building. In total, this amounts to 49,000 meters, which is half the distance to space. 

The installation proved tricky due to both the scale of the project and the tight city-centre site. It provided Maple with an opportunity to test our ability to overcome logistical challenges and adapt to challenging environments. Victoria Square car park's successful completion marked a very proud moment for Maple and set us on an upwards trajectory.

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