Allam Diabetes Centre, Hull Royal Infirmary

Allam Diabetes Centre, Hull Royal Infirmary

The new £8.5m Allam Diabetes Centre at Hull Royal Infirmary plans to treat and care for patients with diabetes and metabolic bone diseases.

It also includes a significant amount of clinical research facilities supporting not only diabetes and endocrinology, but also vascular surgery, neurology and other research departments.  Its curved towers flank a glass entrance, which leads to a large waiting area and reception. Spread over three storeys are consulting rooms, specialist treatment rooms, office space and changing rooms as well as a roof terrace on the second floor. 

Designed to achieve a BREEAM rating of ‘very good’, the thermal performance of the insulation specified for the Allam Diabetes Centre’s flat roof was hugely important. Another crucial factor was fire safety. Although the application doesn’t fall under current fire regulations banning combustible insulation, the architect specified that only non-combustible materials should be used during construction.  

Main contractors Zenith Developments appointed specialist contractors Fosters Roofing to install the roof. They in turn tasked DANOSA UK with supplying all the materials for the roof construction, including the insulation. 

“The build-up of the Allam Diabetes Centre was a single-ply warm roof with a tapered insulation scheme to provide the fall required for rainwater run-off,” explained Steve Downey, Commercial Director at DANOSA UK. “Tapered insulation schemes are always more difficult than traditional flat roofs, so we asked Knauf Insulation for technical advice on how to achieve the required U-value of 0.18 W/m2K.” 

The Knauf Insulation Technical Support Team recommended Rocksilk® Flat Roof Slab. It is BBA certified for use on mechanically fixed flat roof build-ups and is suitable for all types of roof deck.  

As well as excellent thermal performance, Rocksilk® Flat Roof Slab is non-combustible with the best possible Euroclass A1 reaction to fire classification. It also provides excellent sound absorption so will help reduce the drumming effect of rainfall.  

Rocksilk® Flat Roof Slab contains a special water repellent additive and is manufactured using Knauf Insulation's Krimpact® Technology which provides high levels of compressive strength and durability. 

As the project was a tapered insulation scheme, Rocksilk® Flat Roof Slab was manufactured to order to ensure the correct fall was created. 

The tapered insulation scheme wasn’t the only challenge with the Allam Diabetes Centre – it also features a curved façade, which added complexity for the installation team at Fosters Roofing.  

Paul Foster, Managing Director at Fosters Roofing said: “Insulation needs to be carefully cut to the exact shape of the building otherwise heat can escape making it less energy efficient. Thankfully Rocksilk® Flat Roof Slab was easy to cut and quick to install, so it wasn’t a problem.” 

Rocksilk® Flat Roof Slab has also been designed to knit together during installation so there are no gaps that could affect thermal, fire or acoustic performance. 

By using Rocksilk® Flat Roof Slab, Fosters Roofing and DANOSA UK were able to achieve the required specification for the tapered insulation scheme on the new Allam Diabetes Centre. This will contribute to the energy efficiency needed to achieve the BREEAM ‘very good’ rating.