Surround, a durable cladding product from Cemintel® was chosen as the ideal solution for the facade of the Intensive Care Unit at the Calvary Public Hospital in suburban Canberra.

Located in Bruce, the Calvary Public Hospital, in its 40th year of operation, sought to replace the cladding on the facade of their ICU wing with a product that would deliver clean, precise lines, a smooth finish, and, very importantly, safety. All buildings in Australia must comply with the requirements outlined in the Building Code of Australia (BCA); Cemintel’s Surround met the need for a high-end durable solution that could be used wherever a non-combustible material is required under the Deemed-to-Satisfy provision of the BCA. 

The hospital took this opportunity to update the existing look, which featured the more common, metallic aluminium finish often used in commercial buildings.

Surround’s selected palette of four tones referenced the Calvary Health Care colours, all stacked in an intricate tessellation to create a unique and sophisticated facade. The primary tone, Surround Greyish, is a subtle colour that works well on its own for a subdued effect, or as a complement to bolder colours. Greyish was complemented by Whiteish, Blackish and Blueish tones, with the facade cladding panels installed using colour matched rivets as part of the design aesthetic.

Surround’s expertly curated neutral colours and discrete patterns establish a sense of calm on the exterior of the important ICU building in the hospital complex. The cladding not only allows easy recognition of the building within the hospital precinct, but also presents an inviting front to patients as well as those accompanying them, creating a calming effect.

The new facade was installed by Eifer. Contractor Jackson Roberts commented on the replacement of the facade’s panels with Cemintel cladding:

“Moving from a 4mm aluminium composite panel to a 9mm fibre cement product meant we had to completely upgrade the framework to be compatible with the new panels. One of the shortcomings of aluminium facades is that even to replace a damaged panel, you need to remove the whole wall.

“Luckily, the rivet fixing method of the Cemintel is easy to use, despite the thickness of the Surround panels. Having a pigment coloured core on the panel, combined with the gasket tape in the express joint, gives a unique look and negates the need for a silicone joint like other facade systems,” says Jackson.  

Jackson also commented on Surround’s ease of installation, especially with the difficult task of replacing each panel and some site challenges.

“The Surround product is pretty easy to work with and is cut with normal fibre cement cutting blades. We were a little concerned because it was a prefinished product and had to take a little more care, but we established a clean storage area and just moved it to the cutting area as the project progressed.

“Replacing the facade was a challenging process, but ultimately, using Surround gives better security and longevity to the project. The durability of the product was of real importance to ensure the new facade would stand the test of time.

“It was very important that the products used were compliant with Australian Standards and were non-combustible, given the highly publicised industry issues associated with combustible cladding, especially in public buildings. Selecting Cemintel offers peace of mind that the materials used comply with Australian building standards,” concludes Jackson.

Cemintel’s Surround replaces cladding identified as non-compliant with current Australian building standards. An audit is currently in progress in The Australian Capital Territory to identify public buildings that contain potentially combustible materials.