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CIS Tower Manchester

The CIS Tower with service tower on the right.

StatsEdit

  • name = CIS Tower.
  • location = Manchester, England.
  • status = Grade II.
  • Planned out= 1958.
  • start_date = 1959.
  • completion_date = 1962.
  • opening = 1962.
  • renovation_date = 2006.
  • building_type = Office.
  • architectural_style= Modernism.
  • antenna_spire = Non atached.
  • roof level height = 118m.
  • floor_count = 25.
  • elevator_count = N/A.
  • Unit cost = N\A.
  • Floor_area = N\A.
  • architect = Gordon Tait , G. S. Hay and Burnett, Tait & Partners.
  • structural_engineer= N/A.
  • main_contractor =  N/A.
  • developer = CIS.
  • owner = The Co-operative Group.
  • Facility management = N\A.

OverviewEdit

The CIS Tower  is an office skyscraper on Miller Street in Manchester, England. It was completed in ?/?/1962 and rises to 387 feet (118 m) in height.

The Grade II listed building, which houses the Co-operative Banking Group, is Manchester's second-tallest building and the tallest office building in the United Kingdom outside London. The tower remained as built for over 40 years until maintenance issues on the service tower required an extensive renovation which included covering its facade in photovoltaic panels. Note that "CIS" is short for Co-operative Insurance Society Co. Ltd. Head Office and dose not refer to the post 1990 Commonwealth of Independent States organisation.

BackgroundEdit

CIS Tower tiled in 2002

The mosaic-clad tower in 2002.

The tower was designed as a prestige headquarters to showcase the Co-operative movement in Manchester. I n 1958 the company proposed building an office tower block, construction began the following year and was completed in 1962.  It was designed by Gordon Tait of Burnett, Tait & Partners and Co-operative's own architect, G. S. Hay and his subsidiary firm. In the 1990s, it was granted Grade II listed building status by English Heritage.

When completed in 1962, at 387 feet, the CIS Tower overtook the Shell Centre as the tallest building in the United Kingdom, a title it retained for a year until it was replaced by the Millbank Tower in London. In 2006 the Beetham Tower became the tallest building in Manchester. 

The tower, described as "the best of the Manchester 1960s office blocks", was listed for its "discipline and consistency". It is part of a group with New Century House and its Conference Hall on Corporation Street. The tower's design was influenced by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill 's Inland Steel Building  in Chicago after a visit by the architects in 1958. Every one in the West's construction industry thought that modernism was a cool, cheep, efficient and avaunt-guard style at the time.

ArchitectureEdit

New Century Hall

CIS Tower from Miller Street. Attribution: Stephen Richards.

Planning philosophyEdit

The plans usedEdit

The office tower building rises above a five-storey podium block. It has a steel frame and glass curtain walls with metal window frames. Black vitreous enamel panels demarcate the floor levels. The building materials, glass, enamelled steel and aluminium, were chosen so that the building could remain clean in the polluted Manchester atmosphere. The tower's concrete service shaft, which rises above the office tower, has two bands of vents at the top and was clad in a mosaic made up of 14 million centimetre-square, grey tesserae designed to shimmer and sparkle. The projecting reinforced concrete service shaft houses lifts and emergency stairs.

The ground floor is set back behind six pillars. A green bronze-like, abstract mural sculpted by William George Mitchell made from fibreglass covers the entrance hall's rear wall. The building has 700,000 square feet of floor area with clear open spaces on the office floors. Interiors were designed by Misha Black of the Design Research Unit. The executive areas are delineated by the use of teak and cherry wood veneers.

National recordEdit

When completed in 1962, at 387 feet, the CIS Tower overtook the Shell Centre as the tallest building in the United Kingdom, a title it retained for a year until it was replaced by the Millbank Tower in London. In 2006 the Beetham Tower became the tallest building in Manchester. 

RenovationEdit

CIS Tower by night

CIS Tower at night.

Original issuesEdit

Within six months of construction some of the mosaic tiles on the service tower became detached owing to cement failure and lack of expansion joints in the concrete, but there were no major issues, such as those found at London's Ronan Point. Although the tower was granted listed building status in 1995, falling tiles were an ongoing problem. English Heritage had to be consulted as alterations could change the building's appearance.

2004Edit

In 2004 CIS consulted Solarcentury with a view to replacing the deteriorating mosaic with 575.5 kW of blue building-integrated photovoltaic (PV) cells which would provide a permanent green energy solution, generating approximately 180,000 kWh (average of 20 kW) of electricity per year. The work was completed by Arup and at that time was the largest commercial solar façade in Europe. The PV cells made by Sharp Electronics began feeding electricity to the National Grid in November 2005. The project, which cost £5.5 million, was partly funded by the Northwest Regional Development Agency which granted £885,000 and the Energy Savings Trust at the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) contributed £175,000.

>Building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) are photovoltaic materials that are used to replace conventional building materials in parts of the building envelope such as the roof, skylights, or facades. They are increasingly being incorporated into the construction of new buildings as a principal or ancillary source of electrical power, although existing buildings may be retrofitted with similar technology. The advantage of integrated photovoltaics over more common non-integrated systems is that the initial cost can be offset by reducing the amount spent on building materials and labor that would normally be used to construct the part of the building that the BIPV modules replace. These advantages make BIPV one of the fastest growing segments of the photovoltaic industry. The CIS Tower has 575.5 kW of blue building-integrated photovoltaic (PV) cells which would provide a permanent green energy solution, generating approximately 180,000 kWh (average of 20 kW) of electricity per year as of 2005.

The environmental awardsEdit

The solar power project was chosen by the DTI as one of the "10 best green energy projects" of 2005. Out of sight on the roof are 24 wind turbines generating 10% of the tower's electricity.

The technology usedEdit

The term building-applied photovoltaics (BAPV) is sometimes used to refer to photovoltaics that are a retrofit – integrated into the building after construction is complete. Most building-integrated installations are actually BAPV. Some manufacturers and builders differentiate new construction BIPV from BAPV. [1]]

PV applications for buildings began appearing in the 1970s. Aluminum-framed photovoltaic modules were connected to, or mounted on, buildings that were usually in remote areas without access to an electric power grid. In the 1980s photovoltaic module add-ons to roofs began being demonstrated. These PV systems were usually installed on utility-grid-connected buildings in areas with centralized power stations.

In the 1990s BIPV construction products specially designed to be integrated into a building envelope became commercially available.  A 1998 doctoral thesis by Patrina Eiffert, entitled An Economic Assessment of BIPV, hypothesized that one day there would an economic value for trading Renewable Energy Credits (RECs). A 2011 economic assessment and brief overview of the history of BIPV by the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory suggests that there may be significant technical challenges to overcome before the installed cost of BIPV is competitive with photovoltaic panels. However, there is a growing consensus that through their widespread commercialization, BIPV systems will become the backbone of the zero energy building (ZEB) European target for 2020. Despite technical promise, social barriers to widespread use have also been identified, such as the conservative culture of the building industry and integration with high-density urban design. These authors suggest enabling long-term use likely depends on effective public policy decisions as much as the technological development.

Also seeEdit

  1. Famous buildings
  2. Ronan Point
  3. The WTC
  4. Heygate Estate
  5. Ferrier Estate
  6. Aylesbury Estate
  7. Banbury's Bradley Arcade
  8. Canary Wharf
  9. Pirelli Building, Milan

SourcesEdit

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CIS_Tower
  2. http://www.modernist-society.org/icon.html
  3. http://www.skyscrapernews.com/buildings.php?id=118
  4. http://www.lookingatbuildings.org.uk/cities/manchester/buildings-in-focus/the-cws-and-cis-buildings.html
  5. http://www.skyscrapernews.com/buildings.php?id=118
  6. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historic_England
  7. https://www.historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list-entry/1270494
  8. http://www.co-operativebank.co.uk/history-of-the-solar-tower
  9. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/manchester/3218247.stm
  10. http://www.britishlistedbuildings.co.uk/en-458645-cooperative-insurance-society-#.V6abHlQrLcs
  11. http://www.c20society.org.uk/casework/reports/2003/cis-tower-manchester.html
  12. http://upkeep.sharp.eu/nok/apps/eu/index.html
  13. http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/solar-power-tower-hits-city-1030970
  14. http://web.archive.org/web/20070905124144/http://www.solarcentury.com/projects/commercial/cis_solar_tower
  15. http://www.solarcentury.com/uk/
  16. https://www.engadget.com/2007/04/21/uks-cis-solar-tower-garners-390-kilowatts-from-the-sun/
  17. http://www.coop.co.uk/corporate/aboutus/our-democracy/The-Co-operative-Group-Values-and-Principles/ourvaluesinaction/thesolartower/
  18. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_Thrace
  19. http://www.truecrimereport.com/2009/09/jack_ziniuk_charged_with_decap.php
  20. http://www.emporis.com/complex/105196/co-operative-insurance-society-co-ltd-head-office-manchester-united-kingdom
  21. http://www.emporis.com/companies/127853/g-s-hay
  22. http://www.emporis.com/companies/127852/sir-john-burnet-tait-and-partners-london-united-kingdom
  23. https://www.triposo.com/poi/W__30333665
  24. https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list-entry/1270494
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