The Suncorp office fitout project incorporated FireMaster concertina curtains from Greene Fire around the internal stair voids to provide a cost-effective fire protection solution.
Located at 10 Shelley Street, Sydney, the Suncorp office is in a mixed-use development constructed in 2003 with an effective height in excess of 50m. The existing building comprises of car parking in basements 1 to 4; the commercial lobby, lobby café and auditorium on the ground floor; offices from Levels 1 to 15; and the roof terrace on Level 16.
The development had all the service requirements expected in a building with an effective height greater than 50m including a smoke detection system, sprinkler system, zone smoke control and emergency warning and intercommunication system. However, the design of the Suncorp fitout included areas that did not comply with the deemed-to-satisfy (DTS) provisions of the BCA.
The performance solution envisaged to meet the relevant performance requirements of the BCA included the fire separation of stair voids using vertical fire curtains that achieve a fire resistance level (FRL) of -/120/-.
The fire separation of the internal voids had to be continuous between the fire rated floor slabs including the ceiling space and access floor voids. Any opening would have to be protected in accordance with clauses C3.12 and C3.15 of the BCA.
Greene Fire solution
Fire compartments were created using FireMaster concertina curtains around the internal stair voids in six locations from Levels 3 to 15 – the fire curtains were installed around the internal stair voids on Levels 4, 6, 8, 10, 12 and 14. The fire curtains were suspended from the ceiling and a fire rated bulkhead batt system was used to fire rate above the curtains, creating the continuous fire separation between the fire-rated floor slabs.
Red light warning strobes located on both sides of the curtains were also installed – these warning lights would be activated until the curtain was fully deployed. Obstruction sensors used in conjunction with a voice warning system would notify occupants of any obstructions in the way of the curtain as it dropped.
The curtains would remain in fire mode until the alarm signal is restored, at which time the curtains can be auto retracted by simply pressing a reset button on the control panel. The control panels have been hidden with an access panel provided so as not to compromise the architectural design.
Benefits of Greene Fire FireMaster concertina curtains
Greene Fire’s solution for the Suncorp building included a smaller headbox design featuring a 225mm wide visible tray that ensured the fire curtain metalwork was as unobtrusive as possible. The curtains were built into bulkheads with only the bottom tray visible, so the architectural design did not have to be compromised to create the required fire separation.
The controls have been installed at a lower level close to each fire curtain so that the client can perform periodic testing easily on each lifesaving device.