Braid Museum & Arts Complex, Ballymena
This project is a new award winning state of the art Museum and Arts complex and comprised the refurbishment of the former Ballymena Town Hall (A grade II Listed Building) and development of adjacent land incorporating a new regional museum with conference, arts and concert facilities.
In 2009 Delap & Waller won a prestigious ACE Engineering Excellence Award for the project. In the same year the project also received Civic Trust and RIAI awards. More recently it was the Overall Winner of the RICS Northern Ireland Award for Excellence in the Built Environment and also the Building Conversation category.
The project had a build value of almost £17 million and a gross floor area of 7,500 m2. The arts centre includes a 400 seat auditorium, 77 seat studio theatre, conference rooms, arts workshop spaces and a tourist information centre. The development also incorporates a suite of offices used as the council’s main Civic offices including mayoral functions.
In addition to the normal complement of building services a variety of specialist installations and low carbon technologies were incorporated. These included: the use of Geothermal boreholes feeding heat pumps linked to under-floor heating, natural ventilation of Atria spaces (we used in-house thermal modelling and simulation software to advise on the architecture and building mass to show that design comfort conditions could be maintained), Adiabatic cooling for environmentally sensitive spaces including archive and display areas, solar water collection for domestic water and Rainwater harvesting to reduce cold water consumption. The new museum facility includes a sophisticated IT and data infrastructure to support interactive educational facilities and an interactive wall gallery in the main atria space. A particular challenge on the project was integration and servicing of modern state of the art stage engineering, lighting and sound systems into a Grade 2 listed building.
Delap & Waller was appointed to provide full design duties for the building services and lift installations under a traditional JCT form of contract.