The ceiling in the construction process

  • Co-ordination more than pays for itself.

  • Co-ordination provides better technical solutions and improves the general appearance.

  • What is worth doing is worth doing well.

Client
  • Define the functional and aesthetic requirements exactly.
  • Request detailed design and co-ordination of the ceiling.
  • Clarify intentions and expectations for the premises. Use existing projects as references.
  • Base requirements for the interior environment on current standards.
  • How does the chosen form of contract affect issues involving the suspended ceiling?
Designer

Preliminary planning and design

  • Establish the client's intentions and expectations. Make the client aware of the importance of co-ordination.
  • Prepare the drawings for the suspended ceiling at an early stage, taking into account the co-ordination of the services.
Design and specification
  • Ensure that all the services and the suspended ceiling are allocated sufficient space.
  • The depth of the ceiling void also affects sound absorption.
  • Specify accessories suitable for the selected ceiling system.
  • Exposed components, e.g. luminaires fitted into exposed grid systems, must be colour co-ordinated.
  • Exposed tile edges must be painted. This must be indicated in the documentation.
  • Inspect the installation of the ceiling system on site. 
Focus DG, Gensler & Associates Architects, Boston, MA, US, Architect: Gensler & Associates Architects,Photographer: Fred Smith Associates
Gensler & Associates Architects, US,
Architect: Gensler & Associates Architects,
Photo: Fred Smith Associates (Ecophon Focus DG)

Purchaser
  • Calculate quantities accurately.
  • Include all information from the designer in the contract documents, e.g. regarding accessories and modifications.
  • Agree products/solutions proposed with the designer.
Ceiling contractor
  • Make critical review of documentation.
  • Think through the details of the installation.
  • Try to anticipate critical phases and how they should be avoided.
  • Go through and hand over maintenance instructions to the facility manager.
  • Ceiling systems that are advanced from an installation point of view, with small dimensional tolerances, might extend the installation period, compared to more basic systems.
Installer
  • Study the drawings and specifications thoroughly.
  • Check that the ceiling heights specified can be achieved.
  • Measure out the ceiling. Avoid having small perimeter tiles.
  • Check that the materials delivered correspond to the specification.
  • Impose requirements on other contractors' solutions that have an impact on the ceiling.
  • Show other site workers how to handle the ceiling, e.g. gloves must be worn. 
Centre des Arts d Énghien Les Bains, France, Architect: Cabinet Architectoria, Photo: Patrick Salaün
Centre des Arts d Énghiein Les Bains, France,
Architect: Cabinet Architectoria,
Photo: Patrick Salaün (Focus DG)

Design

Ecophon official reference: School, multimedia resource center, group study. Project: Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan, KTH, The Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden. Architect: Ahrbom Arkitektkontor AB. Photo: Åke E:son Lindman. System: Focus DG.

Solutions and advice about ceiling design and how the ceiling is integrated to different interfaces.

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