Anyone who’s visited Cersaie, Cevisama or Coverings in the past year will have been left in no doubt that terrazzo-effect tiles are ‘hot’ right now. However, let’s us not forget that the material that provides the inspiration remains a specifier’s favourite, particularly for high traffic areas like supermarkets, retail malls and transport hubs. This has been underlined in the UK recently by a major project to lay around 7,500 sq. metres of new conglomerate flooring and screeding at Gatwick North Terminal: an exemplar of a high profile, high footfall area. The contract was undertaken by National Federation of Terrazzo, Marble and Mosaic Specialists (NFTMMS) members DMC Contracts and InOpera Group. The main contractor for the project was Balfour Beatty.
“Our experience of dealing with large infrastructure projects, our database of skilled tradesmen and our ability to help with design interfaces all played an important part in us winning the tender to lay the tiles,” explained DMC Contracts Sales Director, Conor McCann.
To ensure both the quality of the installation and that testing was undertaken at all stages, DMC Contracts introduced Inspection and Test Plans which were administered for each bay of work that was completed. The tile chosen for the flooring by the client, Gatwick Airports Ltd, was manufactured by InOpera Group, and has been used at Gatwick for more than 15 years.
“We developed a special mix and tile for Gatwick that has allowed them to keep the same base but change the colour, according to the location,” says InOpera Group’s Sales and Marketing Director, Enzo Favro. “The material was chosen for its flexibility in terms of dimensions and has passed the most stringent tests as passenger levels are in excess of 5000 people an hour.”
The installation processes involved screeding, incorporating movement joints, applying adhesive and laying the tiles. Throughout the installation the floor was thoroughly checked to ensure that there were no sudden irregularities, undulations, steps, ridges, bumps, ripples, rocking or lipping.
A new post by Joe Simpson, Diary of a Tile Addict, November 2017.