FDS Consult UK has provided its expert fire strategy services to the landmark Capital Towers development in East London. The fire engineering specialist was appointed to develop a strategy for its two interconnected, high rise buildings that would ensure the safety of residents while maximising space and reducing costs.
Capital Towers, a luxury residential project located in Stratford, was developed by Galliard Homes. The scheme comprises of two separate towers: the 15-storey City West Tower and the 36-storey Sky View Tower, which provide a combined total of 191 apartments. Residents benefit from a range of high-end facilities including a private gym, lounges and roof gardens as well as views of the East London skyline.
Appointed by design consultants Whitecode Design Associates, FDS Consult UK was tasked with delivering an appropriate fire strategy to save space and minimise costs, while also meeting all relevant British Standards and regulatory documents.
By specifying a 0.5m² mechanical smoke shaft per tower as part of the strategy, FDS Consult UK’s team of experts were able to provide significant space saving within the building while providing the necessary levels of smoke-clearance required along the single staircase approach for each tower.
FDS Consult UK classified the residents’ gym, crèche and private lounge as ancillary accommodations to the residential areas, allowing the extension of the mechanical smoke shaft from the above levels to provide the required levels of smoke ventilation without the need for additional smoke ventilation systems.
Capital Towers Fire Management Strategy
After a careful analysis of each area of the building, FDS Consult UK recommended extending the mechanical smoke shaft from the levels above to provide the required levels of smoke ventilation for the ancillary areas – the residents’ gym, crèche and private lounge.
As these facilities will only be used by residents who are familiar with the building’s escape routes in the event of a fire, the FDS Consult UK team were able to justify the use of a residential sprinkler system, providing substantial savings by avoiding the installation of unnecessary additional systems.
While it is required under Approved Document B for buildings measuring over 30 metres in height to include sprinklers throughout, FDS Consult UK was able to provide a safe and cost effective solution that only included the sprinklers within the residential apartments at Capital Towers.
This engineered out the need to extend the sprinkler coverage to car parking areas, gym, crèche, other ancillary areas and the development’s standalone retail unit, providing additional space for residents and also significant cost savings.