The loss of the Glasgow School of Art library at the Charles Rennie Mackintosh building in June 2014 was a devastating moment for the people of Glasgow and Scotland. The landmark building is a piece of Scottish architectural history and its priceless library was reduced to ash.
The iconic library was set to be restored to its former glory with the help of millions in public funding but after several years of renovation works, in Aug 2018, a second more devastating blaze gutted the historic building, much like the more recent Notre Dame catastrophe. The Chief Executive of BAFSA told Glasgow Live that “a fire suppression system was only weeks away from being installed” and added, “during reconstruction, we recommend a temporary system, particularly where you’ve got a building of such value”.
Details of the fires at the Mackintosh building and Notre Dame have not been confirmed but experts say the ongoing restoration works is likely to have led to both fires. Only months after the building was set to reopen a subsequent strategy is being put in place to dismantle and reconstruct the Mackintosh building as part of a campus-wide expansion project.
Stow College, a part of the Glasgow School of Arts (GSA) Garnethill campus expansion, is a landmark building and has been a part of Glasgow’s educational landscape for 80 years. The GSA bought Stow College to house the new School of Fine Art in 2016 and planned to carry out extensive refurbishments to innovate the 1930’s building while keeping its character.
However, since the two Mackintosh fires, the priority was to fully protect the building from fire and a focus on fire safety ensued. The Glasgow School of Arts also needed the building to be completed quickly so that the Stow College building could be used as part of its campus.
Project Fire’s Zonecheck Addressable system was highlighted as a way to prove compliance with fire codes, while automating sprinkler system testing, the system also provides around the clock monitoring of installed components ensuring that faculty and students are kept safe whilst mitigating any further fire damage costs.
Project Fire worked closely with Kentallen Mechanical services, who installed the system, ensuring that our technicians were on hand for the commissioning to guarantee the system was up and running so that faculty and students could move in as soon as possible
- Scott Young. Kentallen Mechanical Services
Project Fire was originally briefed on installing Gemini to protect the College’s comms rooms. After careful review of the project and collaboration with onsite contractors, Zonecheck was added subsequently and installed throughout the risers to help the college automatically monitor and test the system, and provide proof that testing is being carried out in compliance.
- Jake Walker, Technical Director, Project Fire