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Mezzanine Floor in Taunton

Client: Space Adventurers Soft Play
Value: £65k

The requirement

Our client runs a successful soft play centre in Taunton. Part of the centre is the nursey, which has grown in popularity and earned a great reputation. The client had ran out of space and could not take on any more children despite a full waiting list.

Our solution

The café area in the soft play part of the building adjoins onto the nursery and is all on the ground floor. Our solution was to install a lightweight steel mezzanine floor over the café and seating area. This will maximize the height of the building and gain a whole new play room for the nursery.

The customer already had a staircase in place which was used as a staff entrance into the first floor nursery rooms. This was kept in place and the mezzanine floor was built level with the existing floor.

The mezzanine floor was built as an L-shape around the existing soft play equipment to maximize the square meterage of floor space for the nursery. Careful consideration was made on where the support pillars were to be located below so it did not interfere with the existing café counters.

Building Regulations

There are also other important factors that must be considered when designing a floor and we bring this expertise in our advice of what can and cannot be done. The floor must be submitted for Building Regulation Approval which we do, and this is a legal requirement by law. Steel behaves in strange ways when it gets hot, before melting the steel can twist and as the floor is a fully stressed structure it can collapse and so there are all kinds of rules relating to travel distances and fire protection that must be adhered to.

There is more information about Building Regulations here.

Building the Mezzanine Floor.

A fork lift was used for the installation process as the main beams were extremely heavy. The fork lift allows the main beams to be lifted to the height required whilst the upright support posts are installed.

Once the mezzanine floor was in place a new fire rated partition was built along the leading edge of the mezzanine up to the roof level. This was almost 6m high which meant the installation was completed using a scissor lift and the space was very narrow between the soft play and the partition in some parts.

A 1-hour fire rated suspended ceiling was installed below the mezzanine floor with 1-hour fire rated column encasements fitted and a 1-hour fire rated bulkhead along the exposed front edge and stairwell.

Above the mezzanine floor we installed a new suspended ceiling with new LED lighting on both floors.

Do you want extra space?

Please give us a call or contact us and we can help with any aspect of interior office fit out, along with space planning and design work.

01380 73 88 44

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Mezzanine Floor Fire Protection

Mezzanine floor fire protection is the most important task to determine correctly when considering a mezzanine floor, old or new. When a new mezzanine floor is installed by us we always liaise with Building Control to ensure that the correct level of fire protection is carried out on the steel structure. You may think that steel is pretty strong which it is, but in a fire the steel will tend to twist and deform at not very high temperatures and there are several reasons for this.

The effects of fire on a steel mezzanine floor structure

The steel sections that are used in the construction are in themselves very strong but will have been formed from flat sheet steel and either rolled or welded to form the sizes required. Heat on steel anneals or softens the steel which wants to convert to its pre-stressed state. The effect of this is that the whole floor structure twists and due to the weight of the floor, what is on the floor and the steel the whole lot can come crashing down quickly.

All of our steel structures are calculated, and often have triangulation steels in the corners of the floor to prevent twisting in just loading conditions, so the design needs to be calculated properly.

Mezzanine floor fire protection – Suspended Ceilings

Contrary to popular belief and pure incompetence by many of our competitors there are actually very few suspended ceiling types that are fully tested with a specific suspended ceiling tile to give the 1 hour fire protection required by Building Regulations. Some mezzanine floors which are small in proportion to a building and maybe are just used for occasional light storage may not actually require any protection as there is actually no perceived danger to employees and staff. 99% of floors will need mezzanine floor fire protection.

There are a few advantages of using a suspended ceiling over a plasterboard one, the main one is you can hide the services inside it. It is also a finished product without the need for skimming or painting. It can also provide sound performance preventing noise from the ground floor going through the floor. It is also quick to install.

We visit many installations carried out by others where the cheapest ceiling tile has been used, and the cheapest grid, and there is absolutely no way that the suspended ceiling is fire rated and we have to advise the customer of this fact.

Mezzanine floor fire protection other items.

There are many other things that need to be considered but that is perhaps for another article, if you are in any doubt please give us a call and we can check.

What else needs to be done to a Mezzanine Floor once built?

Cre8tive Interiors can carry out all of the work required so that the client can just use the space straight away. This will include the following:

  1. Initial design and layouts for the new space along with costs
  2. Building Regulation Approval
  3. Planning for the work to be done, understanding what needs to be carried out prior to the install date.
  4. Supply and Installation of the mezzanine floor, including relevant fire protection
  5. Electrical work
  6. Partitioning and suspended ceiling work
  7. All lighting, emergency lighting, air conditioning and ventilation
  8. Construction of any toilet areas, canteen or warehouse areas
  9. All types of flooring and decoration.
  10. Office furniture if the extension is for offices.

What Mezzanine floor projects has Cre8tive carried out?

  1. Mezzanine floor in Devizes (light storage)
  2. Fire rating of a Mezzanine Floor in Warminster for Offices
  3. Fire rating of a Mezzanine Floor in Milton Keynes for Offices
  4. Converting / Fire rating an existing storage mezzanine in Corsham for use into Offices
  5. Installation of a new mezzanine floor into an existing warehouse to create offices in Gloucester
  6. Installation of a new mezzanine floor to extend existing offices at first floor level and below in Salisbury
  7. Construction of Fire rated partitions on top of an existing mezzanine floor to meet Building Regulation in Corsham