When thoughtful design can give the best result for less cost

When components become faulty the knee-jerk reaction is so often replacement, but further thought can sometimes pay dividends.

The main trading floor of Shrewsbury’s Iconic Market is circled by a perimeter floor drainage channel which has ten cast iron gullies at the head of downpipes with traps. The channel collects cleaning and wash-down water which often contains debris which would block the traps at the bases of the downpipes.

To intercept these debris the original designer, the building’s nationally famous architect David du Rieu Aberdeen, had specified integral cast iron gullies fitted with special strainers which were removeable for inspection and cleaning. Unfortunately over the years these strainers had corroded and partly disintegrated allowing debris to enter and block traps – this was becoming expensive to clear.

The obvious answer was to replace the traps, but that type is no longer made and breaking the old ones out of the slab and trying to fit a modern equivalent would be very expensive with a risk of compromising the concrete structure and would not visually or functionally integrate with the existing channel.

Instead, the answer PSG adopted was to retain the original cast iron bodies in situ, and design new strainers to fulfil the equivalent duty as the original, and have them manufactured in stainless steel so that this time they would last the life of the building. This was done, allowing a painless, non-disruptive installation, with no visual impact on the appearance – important in a landmark building, and all at a small fraction of the cost of replacement gullies.