In October 2020, the English National Ballet was named Building of the Year by Architects' Journal. The new dance factory with a total of 8,640 square metres of space was designed by the London office of Glenn Howells Architects (GHA). The biggest challenge for the architects was to plan a flexible, modern venue for dance on a limited area with a clear budget. Glenn Howells, Director and Founder of GHA said: "The task was to design a building whose character is defined by the combination of exposed raw material such as concrete ceilings and a translucent profiled glass facade." The white shell as a special design feature contrasts with the surrounding coloured buildings and draws the attention of pedestrians to the dancers in the rehearsal rooms. In the main production studio, dancers have access to a 10 x 15 metre stage area. The rehearsal studios are 15 x 15 metres large, with the floor-to-ceiling windows allowing those walking past to look inside.

3,600 square metres of double-skin Linit P26/60/7 extra white translucent glass encases the building. In order to meet the thermal insulation requirements, the profiled glass facade is fitted with 1,178 square meters of translucent thermal insulation (TIMax GL-PlusF) from Herford-based Wacotech GmbH & Co.KG, giving the facade a heat transfer coefficient (Ug-value) of 1.2W/m²K. TWD meets the requirements for thermal insulation and also offers summer heat and privacy protection, so that the dancers are able to rehearse in private in the rehearsal rooms. The high light diffusion of the UV and temperature-stable thermal insulation insert improves the use of daylight on the spacious staircase as well as in the rehearsal rooms and achieves shadow-free and glare-free room illumination. The thermal insulation value (Ug-value) and the light transmission were among the factors that led to TIMax GL-PlusF being used. In addition, the recyclability of the spun glass was an important factor for the BREEAM rating*.


Glenn Howells Architects

Project Partners

Glazier: Linit UK
Glastype: Lamberts Linit P26/60/7, P23/60/7
Translucent Thermal Insulation (TWD): TIMax GL-PlusF, from Herford-based Wacotech GmbH & Co.KG

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