UHPC façade panel in fibre-reinforced concrete

Nursing home Paris

Project

As part of a project to renovate and convert a building into a new nursing home specifically for Alzheimer’s patients, a Ductal® (UHPC) mesh was designed to cover the garden side façade. Attached to seven storeys of the restored building, it can withstand the loads directly applied to it (own weight and wind).
The mesh consists of “profiles” made of reinforced DUCTAL® (UHPC), with five types of section. Each profile has a constant cross section and extends over two levels.

Each profile is modelled as a beam with three supports, each of them an articulation. Horizontal displacements (X and Y axes) are blocked at each level. Vertical displacements (Z axis) are only blocked at the foot of each plane of the façade. This design means the strips are free to expand vertically under the effect of the ambient temperature and allows a flexion in the bridges of 1 cm at the end of the projection without subjecting the mesh to excess loads. The strips act as sun shades and offer visual comfort.

The ideal solution

The double skin of the façade adds to the comfort of residents:

  • the first one, located in front of the passage ways, keeps out direct sunlight while keeping the rooms bright. That is an essential requirement for users suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.
  • the second skin encloses the building, whilst offering residents generous views of the garden.

The mesh extends over a 1000 sq. m. surface and covers a building height of 22 m. The strips are 6 m long, 20 to 65 cm wide and 7 to 12 cm thick.

Integration into the environment

In a locality that is sensitive and steeped in history, the architects have ensured that the design would be consistent with project requirements and the overall harmony of the site. On the garden side, the new western façade extends with large bends that stay within the limits of surrounding prospects.

The architectural grammar is inspired by the plant life in the garden, its shaded and lit areas playing with those of the trees.

Because of its architectural style, which avoids pastiche, the new façade is rooted in its age, and still addresses the regulatory requirements of the site and safety requirements. The need for fire-fighting access to each room from the outside has led to the creation of passage ways on the western façade overlooking the garden.

This is Concrete.

Fehr Groupe has been a leader on the concrete market since 1960, specialising in both ready-mix concrete (RMC) and precast walls. With a long-held interest in innovation, the group has constantly re-invented itself, bringing you new solutions for your construction projects every day.

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