Formica – Various Projects

Project Summary

Various projects at the North Shields site.

Portland have completed 8 projects including:-

  1. Refurbishment and reinvigoration of original ‘art deco’ administration building
  2. 32,000ft² extension of west factory to provide increased manufacturing and logistics capacity
  3. Extension to house a Fabrication Support Unit including press foundations
  4. Modifications to the existing structure to facilitate the removal of structural columns
  5. East Factory Condition Survey – full condition survey of the original 1930s factory building
  6. 200,000ft² north site expansion (to RIBA stage 4)
  7. Design of Pipe Bridge to carry services over an internal access road
  8. Stack foundation and support frame designs

Our Approach

Portland have enjoyed a long-standing relationship with Formica, completing several projects at the manufacturing plant in North Tyneside.
Key to a successful relationship in this sector is gaining a comprehensive understanding of the manufacturing process and the various drivers that deliver the process such as flow of materials, logistics etc. Often there are many stakeholders in a project, all with differing and often conflicting briefs.

Refurbishment of the existing office to create a European Headquarters by modernising the Art Deco building originally constructed in 1945 and retaining the original features and showcasing the use of Formica’s own products. Portland undertook a full structural survey and assessment of the building. Framed in early steel, it was necessary to refer to historical literature to ensure the building was suitable for modification.

West Factory Extension – the project involved the expansion of the west factory to accommodate logistics operations that were relocated from an existing building to expand production capacity.

Column removals – Portland have undertaken complex designs to facilitate the removal of columns to accommodate new production equipment. The Space Frame configuration of the existing building made the task challenging from a design and installation perspective.

North Site Extension – the purpose of the project was to rationalise the process layout while freeing up other parts of the site for development with more modern and efficient buildings. Portland acted as lead designer and working collaboratively with North Tyneside Council and Formica secured planning permission eight weeks.

East Factory Condition Survey – Portland were commissioned to undertake a structural survey of the 1940s masonry clad steel building and detail remedial works.

Extract stacks – the necessary heights are determined by an odour dispersal model and therefore the height combined with the multiple stacks creates a complex wind loading scenario to be undertaken to allow the foundation and support structures to be designed.

Services Bridge – A support bridge was required to lift services over an internal access road and was required be high enough to allow HGV traffic to pass under. Various underground constraints also dictated the pier positions.


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