Sika Sarnafil contractorThe Sarnavert green roof crowning Newcastle Sixth Form College’s new £22 million facility is flourishing thanks to European Roofing System’s (ERS) expertise.

ERS is an experienced Sika Sarnafil registered contractor, which enabled the team to ensure an effective single ply roof system was installed by making two key changes to the original specification to better suit the demands of this particular project.

The brand new building in the heart of the city features a 1,500sq m Sarnavert green roof. But the original specification was for a roof grown from seed that may have restricted growth due to the potential adverse weather conditions on such a high building. Seeds may have been detached from the roof and caused hazards at ground level.

ERS worked closely with main contractor BAM and persuaded the college to opt for a sedum blanket, which was installed by green roof contractor Sky Garden. ERS’ David Murphy comments: “The living element is now successfully established and, with proper maintenance, it will insulate the building as well as bringing wildlife to the city centre and providing wider environmental benefits for years to come.”

The original plans also included a 1,000sqm metal roof covering. But ERS changed this in favour of Sika Sarnafil’s S327-12EL single ply membrane in Light Grey so as to better cope with the metal standing seam detailing.

“Sika Sarnafil membrane is more flexible in its application and overcame some of the more obtrusive detailing that the metal would have caused,” David continues. “There were also a number of mechanical and electrical roof apertures and these would have required a lot of welding had metal been used. But the detailing was much more easily managed using the heat-welded Sika Sarnafil system.”

The building’s central location also meant that the move to Sika Sarnafil membrane brought a practical benefit. As David concludes: “The 11,000sq m college is right in the middle of the city, making handling materials very difficult due to the site’s restrictive nature. So having the membrane on rolls negated the need for cranes or slings, which was a big benefit.

“We believe that both specification changes represent successful decisions made by a very experienced Sika Sarnafil contractor.”