Gateshead International Music Centre nears completion

One of the most dramatic and exciting projects conceived for the industrial North East has been helped to come to fruition by the skill and expertise of The Angle Ring Company, who are based in the Midlands. Called the Sage Gateshead, the structure is located on the banks of the Tyne at Gateshead Quays and was designed by Foster and Partners who are renowned for their innovative concepts.

The £70M curvilinear building features a dramatic shaped roof standing approximately 38 metres at the highest point. The curved steel frame of the structure and support portals to the building have been created using the specialised metal forming skills of the Angle Ring Company.

Two beam sizes were used for these primary supports, one being 838x292mm and weighing 226 kg/m, the second measuring 762x267mm and 197kg/m. These beams were high grade steel S355J2G3 and were supplied by Corus and other European mills. Lengths of 18.5 metres were bent using either hot or cold bending technologies and supplied to a fabricator in Europe for final fabrication.

The methods of bent beam assembly, provided by Angle Ring, was chosen over the more conventional welded plate construction, despite stiff competition. Where the bending radii were much smaller than recommended for cold formation, Angle Ring utilised a hot bending solution to achieve the necessary curvature. This procedure is ideal for complex metal formed structures but is not otherwise readily available in the UK or Europe.

Over 100 tonnes of bent beam sections were produced and delivered to the overseas fabricator, with the whole order completed and supplied on schedule. The Angle Ring Company also maintains a dedicated export department, with multi-lingual skills and specialist staff having knowledge of the UK and European steel sections sizes and material properties.

The steel and glass Sage Gateshead building reflects the industrial heritage of its location and was completed in winter 2004 / 2005. It provides an international centre covering a wide range of musical requirements and tastes, while providing a boost to investment, jobs and tourism for the area.

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