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The Requirements

Based in a Grade 1 listed building in the centre of Ipswich, Willis Towers Watson are an award-winning insurance broker and financial solutions provider. Their iconic office building, constructed in the 1970’s by Foster & Partners Architects was designed to embody the pioneering and forward-thinking architecture of the period. The building was constructed with years ahead of it’s time and features including natural gas heating, grass roof for insulation and a glass curtain wall system developed by Pilkington Glass.

The unique design of the buildings provided a unique problem for access to the atrium’s ceiling for cleaning and maintenance. Truss UK were approached by Willis Towers Watson to help provide a safe and easy to use access solution.

OBLIK Handrail Sections

The Challenge

To add to the challenge, the walkway/platform required a method of being raised and lowered when in place. This would accommodate a detail in roof truss above. The OBLIK aluminium walkway was mounted on manual scissor lift units, which would allow it to be manoeuvred on the floor and raised to the underside of the roof when needed.

Everything needed to be as modular and lightweight as possible for this bespoke application.

The Result

The bespoke access solution using OBLIK was fully assembled and proof load tested in our works under the conditions of formal Factory Acceptance Test (FAT), prior to dispatch. Our engineers then attended site under a Site Acceptance Test (SAT) in order to train the client operators how to assemble and disassemble the unit safely and efficiently.

In summary, the use of a standard modular space frame structure such as OBLIK was perfectly suited to this application, to allow cleaning operatives a safe method of access to an area only accessible by rope access technicians previously.

Truss UK are proud to have helped this customer and found another perfect application for the OBLIK space frame system.

Paul Jordan

Director, Truss UK

“This was exciting project for us and given the unique design of the building and its operating parameters, there are very few companies that can build a modular aluminium space frame platform like this. I’m proud to say that this bespoke access solution was completely designed, built and tested by our own engineering teams and proved yet again that good quality and value for money solutions are available from proud British manufacturers like ours"

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