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RS Terrazzo - Manchester Central Library

Manchester Central Library re-opened to enthusiastic reviews following a three-year refurbishment. RSL's brief was to provide a modern flooring solution that complemented the building's unique neo-classical style.

First opened in 1934, the Grade II*-listed building is Britain's second-largest public library and an important tourist attraction in the city.

The re-opening of the library is part of Manchester City Council's drive to deliver first class, accessible services and follows the unveiling of the refurbished Town Hall Extension in July 2013.

Public entrances have been restored to their 1930s appearance and new staircases and lift shafts inserted to improve access throughout the building.

Stockport-based RSL supplied bespoke flooring systems of RS Terrazzo and RS Terrain with RS Beadgrip for the floor, stairs and ramped areas of the building.

RSL Commercial Director, Martin Wroe, said: "Special projects like this don't come round very often. You don't have the opportunity to be involved in one of Manchester's most iconic buildings every day. We needed to find products that would capture the beauty of the environment and complement its ornate design.

"The end result needed to be functional as well as beautiful, given the amount of traffic expected through the building.

"We also faced the challenge of working alongside a number of other contractors, due to the sheer scale of the project, but the installation ran really smoothly.

"We think visitors to the building will be amazed by the transformation achieved in the building and we are delighted to have been involved in bringing this beloved landmark right up to date while restoring and showcasing its heritage features back to their former glory."

Councillor Rosa Battle, Executive Member for Culture and Leisure for Manchester City Council, said: "From floor to ceiling to its state-of-the-art facilities, the transformation of Manchester Central Library has been all about painstaking attention to detail. The enthusiastic reactions shows that Central Library is a spectacular asset for the city."

RSL put forward a bespoke design of RS Terrazzo in a special colour palette to complement the neo-classical design features. The system was chosen because of its seamless properties, ensuring a flat, continuous floor surface was achieved.

The product was also used as a pre-cast terrazzo system on some stair areas. RS Terrain was applied on the ramped areas with RS Beadgrip for improved slip resistance.

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