Waterloo is a natural for Everyman Theatre
Air-distribution products from Waterloo Air Products play a key role in the natural-ventilation strategy for the Everyman Theatre in Liverpool. It has the first naturally ventilated auditorium in the country and has won the RIBA Stirling Prize for the best new building of the year. It also has an ‘Excellent’ BREEAM rating. Natural ventilation is used for all the main performance and workspace areas.
For the 400-seat adaptable auditorium, the system devised by Waterman Group is based on supplying outdoor air to the audience without the need for mechanical assistance for most of the summer and all through autumn and spring. Air enters the building through an inlet at the rear and uses the thermal mass of the large plenum under the workshop floor to cool it. It enters the auditorium through Waterloo grilles behind and below the seats.
Heat from people in the audience and lighting causes the air to rise to high level. The air leaves the building through an acoustically attenuated exhaust plenum and then to the four exhaust chimneys.
An air-source heat pump provides heating or cooling as required. Airflow can be fan assisted for smaller air volumes or as a boost when temperatures are exceptionally high.
Rick Edmondson, chairman of Waterloo, explains, ‘Natural ventilation can save as much as 30% of total energy savings.’
Alan Osborne, Waterloo’s senior draughtsman, adds, We helped deliver best value and reduce energy costs throughout by taking a natural approach to ventilation by designing grilles, louvres and diffusers that maximised airflows and throws which, in turn, helped the Everyman to minimise its carbon footprint and make a positive contribution to its environment.’