The façade or skin is a critical component of any building design process, not only in complementing the structural form and expressing the architectural aesthetics, but in meeting the required technical performance criteria. Façades may account for anything between 15 and 25 per cent of the total construction costs and represent an important part of a project’s technical and commercial risk depending on various factors such as complexity, systems and materials, whole life-cycle energy costs, maintenance and replacement. Until recently the technical design and installation of building façades has largely been based on the application of empirical techniques. However, with the ever increasing complication and implementation of new, stringent regulations governing sustainability, façades become more and more important as environmental modifiers that influence energy efficiency and indoor climate of buildings. Nowadays, façade technology goes beyond the traditional disciplines of architecture, structure and building services and develops within an interdisciplinary context that requires facade specialists to be introduced to projects from the very early stages of a holistic design strategy.

BDS’s façade team provides integrated consultancy services on all aspects of building envelope design, procurement and construction. Our façade engineers are extensively experienced and qualified within the industry, capable of delivering project-specific solutions from customisation of commercial systems to designing bespoke systems. We work with architects, building owners and specialist contractors. Regardless of scale and location, BDS undertakes new-build projects, as well as forensic investigations, rectification, retrofitting and re-cladding works of existing buildings to enhance their longevity and performance.

Our primary objective is to achieve economically viable design and construction solutions that improve the quality of façades and enable them perform at the highest possible standard with lowest possible risk. With our comprehensive blend of skills ranging from structural engineering through to architecture, building physics, materials science, programming, manufacturing, procurement, construction techniques and project management, we apply a meticulous methodology to resolve the interrelated issues involved in façade design and detailing. Putting sustainability at the heart of our design process, we thoroughly analyse the environmental behaviour of various façade designs using advanced building information modelling tools and techniques such as:

Through these rigorous assessments we carry out our design and consultancy services in seamless collaboration with project parties executing the discipline of façade engineering as a naturally embedded part of the process without any boundaries. Façades are the key to the holistic success of building projects. The internationally extensive design, technical and commercial experience of BDS’s façade team helps to achieve them elegantly and effectively for both the building and the locale.

BDS is a member of the CIBSE’s Society of Façade Engineering in the UK.