Victoria Gate

Victoria Gate

Architect
ACME
Location
Leeds, United Kingdom | View Map
Project Year
2016
Category
Shopping Centres
Stories By
ACME

WPL (UK) Ltd

Ketley brick
Jack Hobhouse
Product Spec Sheet

Victoria Gate

ACME as Architects

General Victoria Gate,in the East of Leeds city centre, forms a natural extension of Victoria Quarter and Leeds’s retail district. The scheme includes a new John Lewis department store, multi storey car parking and two arcades with a mix of shops, restaurants and leisure facilities. The buildings appear as three distinct elements with individual identities that relate to each other and the vernacular of Leeds.


John Lewis The new John Lewis store anchors the scheme. Placed on the extension of the Headrow, the city’s main civic axis, the store forms a visible gateway into the city centre. The materiality of the building draws on the history of terracotta façades in Leeds, often produced by the local Burmantoffs Terracotta works, providing a modern interpretation of a traditional material. The façade order is also influenced by the textile history of Leeds as well as John Lewis, and is designed as a layered terracotta skin reminiscent of woven fabric. The diagrid is the ordering element that repeats along the perimeter of the building ; the resulting diamonds contain infill panels which respond to the internal layout of the store and the immediate context, providing transparency and ornamentation to the building.


MSCP The Victoria Gate multi-storey car-park [MSCP] is visible from all main urban approaches. From the outset the intention was to separate John Lewis from the car-park, but to acknowledge their shared purpose and relationship to the façade.Twisted aluminium fin cladding creates a diagrid pattern, emphasised by the shadows generated, which relates to the John Lewis façade. The façade efficiently provides vehicular restraint, daylight and natural ventilation. VG Arcades The Arcades building is designed as a two storey, twin arcade with a complex glazed roofscape continuing the grand history of Leeds’s 19th century arcades. A large casino sits above the arcade, partially over-sailing it and creating a four storey civic frontage on Eastgate. The exterior of the building evolves from the 19th and 20th century language of the surrounding Blomfield and Victorian brick and terracotta buildings, with sculpturally pleated brick elevations – brick-faced pre-cast concrete panels changing in rhythm and scale responding to the context of the site. The interiors of the arcades are inspired by the Victorian tradition through the use of curved glass and patterned stone floors, based on Leeds’s woollen herringbone cloth.

Victoria Gate

WPL (UK) Ltd as Architectural Facade

Leeds City Centre is now home to John Lewis’s Victoria Gate where you would think part of it was made from real gold, as WPL’s rooftop regency gold anodised eyelet mesh finish looks fit for royalty.


The support comes from WPL’s architectural supporting sections bolted down onto a concrete roof and towers over the rooftop by an incredible 4 metres. The structure is manufactured from structural extruded aluminium, an unbelievable range for a new era in decorative structures from WPL.


John Lewis is towered by neighbouring offices and accommodation including Leeds University so the key design task was to provide a visual screen to the HVAC Plant Room and a restaurant whilst maintaining a degree of cross flow ventilation without creating an eyesore to anyone with a view of the Rooftop.


WPL added to their already existing suite of structural aluminium sections in order to cantilever a massive 4 metres on a tall building which is subject to significantly increased wind loads. This led to several feats in the architectural design of the screening with full height aluminium expanded mesh towering 4 metres from the deck. More specifically the manufacturing tolerances are incredible with horizontal lines which don’t falter from position over 4 metres of screening.


Expanded mesh is often used to provide screening to unsightly facades and plant but in this instance it was also used as a wind barrier to a rooftop restaurant that would otherwise be an unsuitable location for a restaurant.


Staffordshire Class A special shaped and bespoke snap header bricks with matching extruded brick slips

Ketley brick as Bricks Manufacturer

A range of Staffordshire Class A facing bricks both solid and perforated, with coordinating extruded brick slips, special shaped and bespoke bricks.  The  Victoria Gate Arcade is a complex 3 dimensional brick facade, built with 550 precast brick faced panels.  Ketley Brick worked closely with Thorp Precast to produce a bespoke snap header which allowed 2 headers to be used from each brick without the need for cutting. Acme’s complex,textured design required a brick that would both look good and perform well in rigorous freeze thaw testing.  Ketley’s Staffordshire Red bricks sit well amongst the historic architecture of the Old Victorian Quarter in Leeds.

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