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Commercial Flooring News

Flooring That Sells

A variety of flooring is used in shopping and retail locations:

Altro supplied 500sq m of Designer 25 safety flooring for installation at Meadowhall in Sheffield, one of Europe’s largest out-of-town shopping centres, attracting over 400,000 visitors a week. The product is described as a hard-wearing flooring with silicon carbide and aluminium trioxide for long-term durability and has a slip resistance value (SRV) of 36.

At 2.5mm thick, it is said to give excellent protection against point-loading damage, making it suitable for a variety of footwear, including stilettos and heavy outdoor shoes, as well as for pushchairs where minimising drag is important.

The inclusion of decorative coloured quartz crystals gives various design options. Available in practical dirt-hiding colours, the flooring can be colour-coordinated in front of house areas. It is also designed for low maintenance featuring Altro Easyclean Original technology for a lasting appearance.

To maintain hygiene standards, the flooring is impregnated with a bacteriostat, a chemical agent designed to prevent reproduction of bacteria, while its impervious surface is said to minimise the ingress of dirt for quicker and more cost effective cleaning.

Craig Darwin, owner of CD Carpets which fitted the flooring, said: ‘Altro Designer 25 was really flexible and easy to fit, even up the sides of the walkway. We installed 100sq m in March to ensure that it was fit for purpose and, because the link bridge was so exposed. The full installation was planned for the summer.

‘The main challenge for us was to install the flooring as quickly as possible. The walkway was operational during the day so we installed it overnight from 10pm to 6am. I was impressed that Altro was confident enough to guarantee the long-lasting performance of the flooring for 15 years.’

Bostik products were used in a 3,700sq m refurbishment at the Kiddicare store in Rotherham by Newards, a member of the CFA.

The baby specialist Kiddicare, acquired by supermarket chain Morrisons in 2011, is opening 10 stores across the country creating over 1,000 new jobs.

The floor had to be relaid to a high standard, including dealing with drainage channels in the subfloor that were no longer required. Newards asked Bostik’s technical support team to provide a full specification for the job.

Bostik Screedmaster Deep was used to fill the drainage channels instead of concrete. The product is a protein-free, high strength self-levelling compound suitable for use up to 50mm deep, especially in refurbishment work where a tight turnaround is required; it reportedly accepts foot traffic in just 1.5 hours and floorcoverings in 3-4 hours.

The levelling of the drainage channels allowed the rest of the subfloor to be prepared, starting with Screedmaster One Coat Membrane, a solvent-free two-part epoxy surface membrane for use with power floated concrete slabs and sand/cement screed up to 97% RH. This was then primed with Screedmaster Universal, a water-based solvent-free acrylic dispersion primer. Newards used Screedmaster Smooth for a high quality smooth finish before laying the decorative coverings. This is a protein-free cementitious compound, said to be suitable for application by both trowel and mortar screw pump.

Nik Ward, director at Newards commented: ‘We were very pleased with the performance of Bostik products, especially as it involved working in a large warehouse in mid-winter.

‘The project required us to deliver a high quality job in a tight timeframe; the subfloor preparation products certainly helped us to do just that. We also received great advice from Bostik technical support team on how best to fill in the drainage channels. They visited the site several times.’

Gerflor says its vinyl retail flooring is harder-wearing than steel covered floors, according to independent testing.
Creation Clic System, designed for supermarkets, convenience stores and high street retailers, was analysed at Ceram, independent materials testing and development specialist in Staffordshire.

In a laboratory evaluation to test the raised access steel surface flooring used in shops and offices, a load equivalent to 141 stones was wheeled 20,000 times across the vinyl non-stop for four days.

Richard Hackett, Gerflor UK’s head of retail, says: ‘We’re delighted with the results. Apparently the wheels running on the same route 20,000 times obliterate a line where the steel is; it destroys the steel layers completely.

‘Creation Clic is extremely resilient. There was no structural damage and it will never suffer wear like this from people walking around a shop.’ The antistatic product, in 12 designs, can reportedly be laid without adhesive, over existing flooring without requiring a store to close.

‘With a wear group T rating, and overall thickness of 6mm, Creation Clic is a series of interlocking planks with bevelled edges. With its vertical clipping method and ease of cutting and handling, the flooring can be laid swiftly into corners and against edges, while planks can be replaced individually if necessary.’

He adds: ‘As well as being robust, the polyurethane treatment PUR+ provides excellent resistance to scratching and chemicals and it can be cleaned quickly and hygienically’.

Kährs Oak Brighton wood floor has been installed at agnès b’s new concept store in Marylebone High Street. Fitted by project’s shopfitter D B Solutions (UK), the specification forms part of a store refurbishment. Kährs pale-toned design was chosen to complement the ‘gallery boutique’ design, whilst providing a rustic edge. Kings Flooring supplied the products.
Part of the Sand Collection, Oak Brighton is a one-strip wood floor crafted in Sweden from sustainable, rustic European oak. A white matt lacquer reinforces the tactile ‘beach-chic’ design, whilst providing a durable, easy care surface.
All floors in the range feature multi-layered construction, based on the original ‘parquet’ design invented and patented by Kährs in 1941. Claiming to provide 75% greater stability than a solid format, the construction method is also said to use resources in the most nature-friendly way.

Meanwhile, the glueless Woodloc joint reportedly enables fast, precise installation and eliminate gapping throughout the floor’s lifetime.

Kerakoll UK supplied adhesive and grout for the new Boux Avenue store in Bristol. The adhesive was H40 Eco Flotex, selected to give full back coverage without having to back butter, but being easy to spread and to adjust. It is important to have full under tile coverage for areas subject to heavy foot traffic such as a busy store.

Fugabella Eco Porcelana grout was chosen because it is known to be easy to apply and clean off. It is also said to offer excellent uniformity of colour, while having high mechanical resistance and does not fade in sunlight.
Both the adhesive and grout are classified as Emicode EC1 Plus, meaning they have very low VOC emissions. Taylors ETC Commercial laid the polished porcelain tiles in smart black and white. A tile version of the Boux Avenue logo was created by water jet cutting and inset into the floor.

nora rubber flooring has been chosen by Marks & Spencer for new and refurbished stores. M&S decided on norament 925 grano S8 in the two colours, bright beige in the non-food areas and black in the food halls. Around 100,000sq m of the product will be installed in M&S premises this year alone.

A key factor was that nora and its products comply with the ‘Plan A’ concept of M&S, which sets standards on ecology and social responsibility. All products in the portfolio, plus materials for construction, must meet all criteria based on this concept.

‘Plan A’ includes 100 different aspects with which M&S wants to contribute to solving five major environmental problems, including a reduction of CO2 emissions; and of waste volumes; protection of renewable raw materials; fair trade and a healthy diet.

Like all nora floorcoverings, the products chosen by M&S are based on natural and industrial rubbers mixed with minerals from natural resources and further components, drawn into blanks, pressed and then vulcanised under heat and pressure. This process is said to give the floorcoverings their permanently resilient properties and the wear-resistant surface.

nora rubber floorcoverings come in 300 standard colours and various surfaces. The products are claimed to be slip-resistant, foot-warm, permanently resilient and combine a high level of walking comfort with an excellent footfall sound absorption.

They are classified as flame-retardant and do not contain any PVC, plasticizers (phthalates) or halogens (e.g. chlorine). In case of fire, no hydrochloric gas is released which might lead to caustic burns of the respiratory tract and might form hydrochloric acid in combination with fire fighting water.

M&S operates 450 stores in the UK, predominantly in top city centre locations and offering high-quality products in sales areas between 5,000 and 10,000sq m.

Polyflor has unveiled Expona Control, said to combine the design benefits of an LVT with the performance of an HSE compliant safety floor, offering sustainable wet slip resistance.

It is claimed to be the first product of its type and the culmination of Polyflor’s expertise and creativity in the manufacturing of LVT and safety flooring. The design focussed on 14 colour collection featuring authentic wood and stone designs and reportedly achieves the required slip resistance through the inclusion of aggregate throughout the wearlayer.

Expona Control is intended for use in public areas where there is a risk of spillage or temporary surface water that could make the floor unsafe. It is designed for use in heavy commercial locations, including bar and restaurant areas, supermarkets, department stores, schools and universities.

The product is HSE compliant offering the same slip resistance specification as the Polysafe ranges. Achieving 36+ in the pendulum wet test and 20 microns of surface roughness the slip resistance is sustainable for the life of the product. The enhanced wearlayer creates a rougher, harder friction surface to ‘bite’ into the sole of footwear, to create the necessary durability and underfoot safety. A clean floor is a safer floor and the incorporation of Polyflor’s PUR technology provides an easier regime for maintenance staff and a reduced need for energy, power, water and chemical consumption.

Unlike traditional safety floors Expona Control features inlay strips allowing for countless design possibilities. Tiles and planks from the wood and stone collections can also be installed side by side to delineate rooms and create zonal areas. The combinations and design options are said to promote Expona Control as a more creative concept allowing truly bespoke floors to be created, whilst retaining the safety aspect.
Schlüter supplied products for a newly refurbished Bon Accord & St Nicholas shopping centre in Aberdeen, which recently underwent a £8m upgrade, including its tiled floors.

Hundreds of movement joints, edging and transition profiles, and decorative tile trim products from Schlüter-Systems were specified.

Movement joints from the Dilex range were chosen for secure edge protection and maintenance free solutions for surfaces exposed to continuous vehicular traffic. Finishing threshold strips from the Schiene range were installed to finish tiled surfaces and to protect the outer edges of ceramic and natural stone floorcoverings from mechanical impact.

Also supplied was a range of tile trim profiles to provide a decorative finish and protect exposed tile edges for wall corners, skirtings, stair nosings and tiled edges.

Products in the Rondec, Quadec, Trep and Eck ranges were specified for a durable installation. Ora Ceramics, based in Dalkeith, installed all the Schluter products.

Rondec, Eck-K and Quadec profiles are all claimed to offer excellent protection in a variety of stylish finishes for skirting, tile edges, external corners and tiled walls and other coverings.

Schiene, described as the original finishing threshold strip, reportedly finishes tiled surfaces and protects the outer edges of ceramic and natural stone floors from mechanical impact.

Dilex movement joints are said to offer secure edge protection and maintenance free solutions for surfaces exposed to continuous pedestrian and vehicular traffic.

All profiles are installed at the same time as the tile covering; a variety in various material combinations are available, depending on the mechanical or chemical stresses expected on the covering.
Ultra Floor says Level IT three and the primer, Prime IT N were used in part of an IKEA store in Warrington, originally opened in 1987. The store upgrade included installation of new flooring at the top of the store’s main escalator which was suffering from wear and tear through customer footfall.

Flooring contractor Pennine Interiors, of Manchester replaced 250sq m of Tarkett flooring in four days. Work was done overnight to minimise disruption to trade.

Existing vinyl was uplifted and old residue sanded down before Prime IT N was applied neat, with a roller, to the substrate. This product is a polymer emulsion primer designed to promote the adhesion of Ultra Floor smoothing underlayments to smooth non-porous substrates.

It is said to be suitable for power floated concrete, synthetic screeds, chipboard, hardwood, terrazzo tiles, steel, damp proof membranes, ceramic tiles, asphalt, epoxy, polyester and other hard adhesive residues.

Coverage of up to 50sq m can reportedly be achieved per 5 litre bottle. It was left to dry for up to an hour before levelling with Level IT 3, Superbond, a multi-component bag and bottle system. It comprises a polymer modified cementitious powder for use with either liquid A Superdry or Liquid B Superbond depending on subfloor requirements.

When mixed with liquid A Superdry, it is said to have enhanced drying and is suitable for most subfloors including concrete, sand/cement screeds, flooring grade asphalt and surface damp proof membranes. When mixed with liquid B Superbond, it is reportedly suitable for use over most sound, thin applications of old adhesive residue as well as for dimensionally stable, mechanically fixed plywood subfloors. It can reportedly be used over most old adhesive residues without the need to prime, however Ultra Floor always recommends priming for optimum adhesion. The powder was mixed with liquid B Superbond for it to be used over the existing residue. Level IT 3 is ready for foot traffic after 2.5 hours, decorative flooring between 8-12 hours and can be laid up to 12mm, covering 5sq m at 3mm thickness under good site drying conditions.

The pre-measured liquid additives are claimed to eliminate the need to weigh out on site, thus saving time and reducing risk of error.

This article has been reproduced from the Contract Flooring Journal website. You can find them at