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Riyadh / Saudi Arabia

King Fahd National Library

Project Description

The new National Library in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia completely encapsulates the original library building which was built in the 1980’s. The new contemporary structure features a stunning PTFE façade with a mechanically fastened exposed TPO roof and has become another of Riyadh’s landmark buildings alongside the iconic Kingdom and Faisaliah Towers. It was completed and went into use for its intended purpose in November 2013.

Project Requirements

The new construction included 18,000m² exposed single ply roofs on a lightweight steel structure, which is a rare form of roof construction in Saudi Arabia. However the great co-operation between the roofing applicator BMC, the main contractor Saudi Bin Laden, and following trades ensured that the roof was fully protected at all times and installed far quicker than a traditional concrete construction process. In addition a high performance MTC liquid polyurethane membrane was utilized to waterproof the 56 cantilevered steel trusses that penetrate the roof.

Facts and Solutions

The ESWA association member company supplied a TPO membrane as the main roof covering, also supplying its fasteners to secure the 110mm thick extruded polystyrene insulation boards. The single ply membrane was also mechanically fastened in seam fixing method. Walkway pads were then installed on top to create maintenance access. The roofing system was specified for the project because of the membrane’s proven track record of operating in extreme climates, and the architect’s experience of using exposed polymeric membranes in Germany convinced Thomas Lucking of Gerber Architekten that a TPO roof was the right solution for the library.

Project Participants

Contractor: Saudi Bin Laden
Architect: Gerber Architekten, Dortmund, Germany
Engineer: Bollinger & Grohmann Ingenieure
Organisation: Sika U.A.E. L.L.C.

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