Wednesday 14, October 2015

Dubai – MENA Herald: Strong demand for high quality office space will drive the GCC’s construction market to top USD 125 billion in 2016, industry experts announced today.
Large corporations and small- and medium-sized enterprises are expanding and upgrading offices, as the GCC’s construction sector is set to reach USD 126 billion in 2016, 38 percent growth over 2013, according to Alpen Capital.
In Dubai, the region’s central business hub, office supply is set to increase from 7.6 million square meters in 2014 to 9 million square meters by 2017, according to a recent report by JLL, the global real estate consulting firm.
“GCC companies of all sizes are upgrading their office space, placing employee productivity front and center. However, many new and existing office buildings face acoustic and aesthetic problems – with hard materials such as concrete causing sound reverberation and decreasing productivity. By adopting global best practices in sound-absorbing ceilings, companies in the region can ensure employee satisfaction and enhance competitiveness,” said Santosh Vallil, Sales Manager of Hunter Douglas Middle East, the multinational ceiling manufacturer.
Sound-absorbing ceiling tiles are especially useful in projects where sound absorption is key – including offices, libraries, educational institutions, airports, marketplaces, restaurants, hotels, and convention centers.
Anticipating the growing demand for high-quality office spaces, Hunter Douglas has launched in the Middle East its new light-weight sound-absorbing ceiling solution called TechStyle Islands.
Reducing reverberation to comfortable levels, TechStyle Islands can absorb 75 percent of sound at frequencies between 250 and 4,000 Hertz, which includes the frequencies for human speech and the sound of a telephone.
“TechStyle Islands was developed in response to a need for an affordable, simple and flexible solution for acoustic problems in existing buildings. It certainly is a simple solution; for small-scale application, you don’t even need an architect or installer. The next step, as far as I’m concerned, will be to integrate lighting in the islands,” said Adrian Stieger, Director of Hunter Douglas Switzerland, who invented the solution.
Consisting of fibre glass tiles attached to U-shaped aluminium, TechStyle Islands weigh 25 percent less than traditional ceiling islands, making them easier to install, and reducing the overall load on the building structure and cost to transport.
Sound-absorbing ceilings can be used in both existing buildings, and new buildings with concrete core activation, in which the concrete heats and cools the building. In such buildings, the concrete ceilings need space to release heat or cold, but the extra space causes longer reverberation times; it can be challenging to balance the two.
Made of natural materials, such as fibre glass and aluminium, TechStyle Islands can be fully recycled at the end of their product lifecycle. By not releasing any volatile substances, they contribute to a healthy working environment. The ceiling islands also meet the EN 13501-1 standard, ensuring they can be used in emergency routes.
TechStyle Islands can also contribute to the aesthetic quality of interiors. In buildings with concrete core activation, the warm, plaster-like tiles contrast nicely with the hard roughness of the concrete. The ceiling profiles connect seamlessly in the corners, and the white mineral coating reflects light, making rooms in which the islands are used a lot lighter.
Available in a standard width of 1.2 metres and in lengths from 1.2 to 2.4 meters, TechStyle Islands can be easily mounted without the aid of an installer, with just four screws and a steel wire.