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The Silk District, new Whitechapel development


The Silk District, new Whitechapel development

Project details

  • Product used: URSA TERRA
  • Application: External walls
  • Building type: Multi-Family Homes
  • Architect:

Global insulation manufacturer, URSA, has seen some 25,000 m2 of its specialist insulation materials specified and installed at one of the capital’s largest residential development projects in recent years. Ian Claydon, Technical Manager for URSA UK, describes the specification through to installation journey:

The Silk District is a new development located close to Whitechapel Station and within walking distance to the City of London. The Whitechapel-based scheme compromises three residential blocks set around a piazza with private landscaped gardens. New commercial space on the ground floor of The Silk District will welcome many new and exciting restaurants, cafes, bars, and shops. The Borough is considered an important area of regeneration for London and will meet the aspirations of neighboring Shoreditch, Brick Lane, Spitalfields Market, and Bethnal Green all of which are less than a 10-minute walk from the development.

“Our work with the London-based property development company leading the scheme, Mount Anvil, began in November 2018. We provided advice and guidance on making the correct choice of materials, achieving compliance with Building Regulations (thermal performance, fire resistance requirements, and resistance to rain penetration), and compliance with the NHBC Standards. We also provided numerous thermal models, U-value calculations, and associated condensation risk analysis. The Mount Anvil team was undoubtedly impressed with the speed and quality of URSA Technical Services.

We were involved with external wall construction as well as the design of a brick-clad rain-screen system and continued to work extensively on the scheme throughout 2019 as the design developed further. Work was delayed at the beginning of 2020 due to Covid and re-started in July 2020.

Ian explained: “Collaborating with the client in these very early phases ensured that they were able to select a product that is entirely right for each and every one of their primary and secondary needs.  Planning was critical within the design and roll out and meticulous attention to detail was applied during these initial phases and throughout.

Whitechapel views

Key products installed included URSA’s Cavity Batt 32 & Walltec 32 – 12,000m2 and URSA Acoustic Roll - 13,000m2.  

URSA Walltec 32 is a lightweight, non-combustible, semi-rigid glass mineral wool slab treated with silicon-based water repellent. It is faced with a black glass tissue on one side and is ideal for use behind rain-screen cladding systems in both new build and refurbishment projects. URSA Cavity Batt is a lightweight, semi-rigid glass mineral wool slab treated with silicon-based water repellent. It is suitable for use in both fully and partially layed masonry cavity walls up to 25m high.

Mark Guest, Regional Sales Manager for URSA UK continued: “URSA Walltec proved to be the ideal choice due to its outstanding fire performance qualities, with a Euroclass rating of ‘A1’ making it totally non-combustible and the ultimate in safety specification for behind cladding systems. URSA glass mineral wool is manufactured from an abundant, sustainable resource and utilizes at least 50% glass waste. From an installation perspective, the black glass fleece tissue facing means that the product could be used behind open joint cladding without being seen.

The Cavity Batt is available in a wide range of thicknesses, ensuring the client was able to meet all appropriate Building Regulations and standards. Our new generation URSA TERRA mineral wool has a ‘soft touch’ feel making it easier to handle and install whilst still maintaining its excellent mechanical properties.

“There were several other over-arching factors to consider within this scheme and those included the sheer size and scale of the site and its location in a packed city center. The lightweight nature of both products meant that they could be compressed therefore saving time and money on transport, effectively halving the number of journeys needed. This meant that more products could be delivered to the site and stored in an area where space was at a premium.

“Work is now once again very much underway with an anticipated completion date of early in 2021. The property market is thriving once again and Whitechapel is becoming recognized as a hotspot for investment and is now being considered the destination of choice for many new businesses. Our distributor partner, Encon Insulation in Dagenham, worked closely alongside us during the project”

Ian concluded: “It’s fantastic to see two of our core products specified at this major residential development. We have enjoyed a collaborative, partnering approach with the client throughout. The client has been keen to specify the safest, most durable, sustainable, and quality product available on the market today and we’ve been pleased to support them in their design journey through to installation.”


Location: The Silk District

The Mount Anvil team were undoubtedly impressed with the speed and quality of URSA Technical Services.

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