Outokumpu stainless steel gives a new look for the New Street station in Birmingham, UK. More than 8 000 bright polished, laser-cut panels of stainless steel, altogether more than 20 000 square meters, will cover the façade of the station. Outokumpu supplies up to 400 tons of stainless steel for the cladding of the building.
One of the busiest stations in UK
Birmingham is one of the busiest train stations in the UK, used by 140 000 passengers a day. Originally it was built accommodate less than half that number in the 1960s. Network Rail is now undertaking redevelopment work which will give passengers a concourse with three and a half times more space, more accessible platforms with new escalators and lifts. During the work, the concrete exterior of the building will be cladded in stainless steel.
All stainless steel from Outokumpu
Martifer is managing the entire steelwork project, which was started in 2010 and takes place in the Birmingham city centre. They approached Outokumpu, requesting a very brightly polished stainless steel for the façade of the building. All of the stainless steel in the new New Street station comes from Outokumpu. Tornio produced three-millimeter 316 coils which were then cut to length, bright polished and finished in Sheffield by Outokumpu and its subcontractor, a long-time partner of Outokumpu who was recommended to the customer by Outokumpu. Outokumpu’s plate service centre in Sheffield also advised the station contractors on how to handle stainless steel.
Deliveries to the hour
”The stainless steel facade is an integral element of our project to completely transform Birmingham New Street station. We are working in and around an original 1960s structure that has long given a tired and poor impression to the busiest station outside of London and Britain’s second city. The steel cladding transforms the dated structure into a stunning, 21st century, world class building and puts the station on the map as a landmark in Birmingham, adding to the city's growing reputation for good design. The steel cladding completed so far has already created a buzz around the city and all involved are excited about the future final completion,” says Chris Montgomery, Network Rail Project Director.
“After a careful market analysis and detailed tendering process, Martifer selected Outokumpu due to the high-end characteristics of the product and the confidence instilled in us during the several technical meetings that preceded the order issue. As the extreme complexity of this project is only surpassable through careful management of processes and adequate monitoring of all operations, Outokumpu proved to be the partner we needed for a project of this magnitude and technical requirements. Outokumpu is technically and in Martifer’s opinion the leading expert in stainless steel solutions,” says Francisco Loureiro at Martifer. “Due to the nature of the project and from the fact that almost no single panel is the same and unique laser-etched references were used, Outokumpu’s production process, understanding the best way to streamline and optimize time-consuming tasks and finishing with just-in-time deliveries showed the level of cooperation that is required every day to achieve our common goals.”
“This was a very complicated process and we were working a lot together with the client. New Street station is located in the city centre in Birmingham, so deliveries and project managing had to be done in a time critical manner and to the hour,” says Alison Kinna, VP, British Isles, Middle East & Africa. But managing the entire process was precisely what Outokumpu could do – cutting to length, bright polishing which was one of the specific requirements in this project and managing the entire process from subcontractors to the customers.
The first half of the New Street station has opened up for passengers in April 2013. The station will be completed in 2015.