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Royal & Sun Alliance building
LIVERPOOL'S largest office building is to undergo a £10m transformation just weeks after it changed hands in a record deal.
The Royal & Sun Alliance building in Old Hall Street, known locally as the Sandcastle, was bought by the city's biggest commercial landlord, Downing, in March for £51m, following a fierce bidding war. It was the biggest single transaction for a city centre office building in Liverpool.
It comprises 390,000 sq ft of space, including the glass atrium entrance shared by Royal & Sun and the Liverpool Daily Post & Echo. There are around 2,000 staff of the insurance giant who will remain on the site.
Downing also plans to give the building a new name. It will be known as The Capital.
"It's fitting that we rechristen this imposing building given the extensive refurbishment programme we have in mind," said George Downing, who heads the property group.
"It's the largest business space at the heart of Liverpool's office core and we wanted a name which reflects its status.
"We also settled on The Capital as it's so appropriate for all forms of commerce. Capital growth is the aim of business and capital ideas are ultimately what create jobs, opportunity, and wealth for the city.
"There's also a pleasing resonance with the 2008 European Capital of Culture celebrations." more
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2005 - 2017
They really are a wonderful and successful insurance company. I applied for a job there, and I know I would have loved working there (And gotten along wonderfully, I would have fit in well), but sadly I didn't get it.
The Capital Building is the brown building lit up
The now named Capital Buildings was eco before it was fashionable - 1973.
The building is multi-faceted. The architect wanted superior cladding and a different colour. Cutbacks meant it was clad cheaply and the colour determined by planners, in an awful brown concrete. There have been reports that is may eventually be reclad, which will bring this strange shaped building to life. The buildings is generally hated. I like it and with recladding and imaginative use of colours it would be dynamite. The planned recladding is to incorporate glass atriums changing the looks. An extra insulation layer under any new cladding would really help.
To the eco aspects. The building has minimal glass to conserve heat. The building uses water that seeps into the under river Merseyrail Metro tunnel, built 1870/80s, between Liverpool and Birkenhead. This water is pumped out of the tunnel being a near constant 12C - water seeps through the riverbed rock and is heated by the earth before it reaches the tunnel. After use, the water is discharged into nearby storm drains, helping to keep them flushed and stopping an odour problem which they then suffered. A heat pump using thermal storage uses this water to heat and cool the building, giving minimal energy usage.
In winter the building is heated for a few hours on Monday morning and for the rest of the week the heat from people and office machines is usually enough to keep the building warm. At times it requires cooling in winter.
In summer the 12C water at times is enough to keep the building cool, if not the heat pump cuts in and assists.
The quantity of water pumped from the tunnel was more than required for the building, some of the water was sold to an adjacent insurance building under development at that time.
I believe the heat pumps were the largest in the world employed anywhere for heating/cooling a building at that time.
Story of how it extracted heat/cool from river water This article says the tunnel was the road tunnel. It is the rail tunnel water is extracted from.
Last edited by Waterways; 08-30-2009 at 01:02 PM.
Sounds like another Liverpool 1st WW,or close,anyway!
I am pretty sure it was a first using a heat pump and near constant temperature river water.
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