Smart skin or green skin? A different kind of exterior facade

exterior facade

Creating a unique, distinctive exterior facade on a building is significantly more complex than most people might imagine. The first ever ‘smart’ exterior facades centuries ago were as simple as a humble window, but science, technology and ideas have changed considerably since then!

These days, smart facades, walls and roofs do a lot more than just look good. They are used to provide thermal insulation to a building, help reduce storm water runoff, increase biodiversity and provide more greenery in a concrete city. They can absorb smog and noise pollution, shade the building and even improve people’s stress and happiness levels.

There are three key areas that need to be considered when installing a smart exterior facade.

1. The design. Well-considered design is vital for making the most of the benefits of a facade. Perhaps the most important consideration is to understand the structural load that the facade needs to take, to determine what can be installed. If you intend on having a green facade, the design considerations should include the site’s aspect and exposure to the sun, so that the most suitable material and plants are selected.

If your facade is in full sun, and the aim of the facade is to create a shade barrier, a structure that includes Webnet Mesh will aid with sun shading and the overall thermal performance of the building.

Another solution that we have worked with on a number of projects is the Webnet ID.  It is suitable for a number of situations such as reflecting a corporate logo, creating a unique design with different tiles both on the interior and exterior of the building.  It is a pliable high strength mesh that can also be used as screens to differentiate spaces.

It is manufactured as stainless steel or aluminum and comes in a range of colours.  So creating unique and fully customisable designs is unlimited.  Check out this Hotel Facade design as an example.

2. Installation. Exterior facades are best installed during the building process. This way, the design can be incorporated into the building rather than just added as an afterthought. Roofs, walls and facades can be installed on existing buildings, as long as the structure has the capacity to hold a facade and the design can be incorporated into the existing structure.

3. Maintenance. Maintenance is a critical part of any exterior facade. Any components made from timber or metal will need to be looked after, however some material such as Webnet Mesh needs very little maintenance. If your facade includes plants, the irrigation system must be monitored and looked after.

Whether the goal of your facade is to maximize thermal insulation, increase biodiversity or provide an aesthetic and design statement, careful planning and consideration of all the necessary components is a must.

For any advice regarding an exterior facade, please contact our expert team on 02 9999 3668 or visit us here.

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