Beautiful glass and aluminium balcony balustrades, manufactured and installed by Sapphire Balustrades, are maximising amazing views over the River Thames from apartments in the capital’s new Greenwich Wharf development. The balustrades, custom-designed using Sapphire’s Aluma aluminium section balusters (upright posts) with glass infill panels, are installed to balconies in a range of mixed tenure properties, from affordable apartments to luxury penthouses at the top of the seven-storey blocks.
Greenwich Wharf is a phased development by community constructor, Durkan, in partnership with London and Regional Properties. The new homes form part of a larger development on the Greenwich Peninsula, which will provide an exciting new community of homes, schools, shops and offices within minutes of Canary Wharf and London’s West End. Sapphire’s innovative semi-frameless Aluma system provided the ideal solution for the project’s residential balcony balustrades, integrating the style of a structural glass balustrade with the superior corrosion resistance of high-grade aluminium extrusions.
The balustrades’ Aluma handrails and baluster uprights have a smart Grey polyester powder coated matt finish and are fixed with resin anchors into concrete integrated balconies. The use of aluminium provides an excellent balance between a cost effective solution and ensuring ultimate rust protection. This was a particular consideration for the project given the development’s urban location alongside the river. Infill panels were manufactured by Sapphire from 10mm clear toughened glass with polished edges. As part of a complete balustrade package, Sapphire also supplied glazed privacy screens between individual apartment balconies. These are manufactured from toughened glass panels which have been sandblasted to one face and then coated with a Ritec protective coating for low maintenance.
The design of the development uses the balcony shape to maximise the angular, sharp appearance; Sapphire created this architectural effect as part of its ‘Intelligent Engineering’ process. In addition to satisfying Greenwich Wharf’s aesthetic specification, all the balcony balustrades were designed by Sapphire to comply with relevant standards for structural performance and design loads. Additionally, balustrades had to satisfy specific safety regulations relating to residential applications, such as suitability for children, which ensures that balustrades are not easily climbable and have no gaps of more than 100mm, to prevent a small child falling through.