CSC lays the screed for the historic 'New' Bodleian Library Oxford

March 2014

Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford© Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford

The public, researchers and scholars around the world are anxiously awaiting the opening of the Grade II listed Weston Library (formerly the New Bodleian), Oxford. The library has been undergoing a major modernization and redevelopment since 2011 and is expected to open to the public by March 2015.
CSC’s services and advice were sought by Principal Contractors Elliot Thomas for the installation of nearly 3000sq.m of screed for the library floors. We are proud to have been part of this historic and prestigious project at the heart of Oxford’s renowned seat of study and culture.
Preserving the library’s vast collection of more than 3.5 million books, manuscripts, archives, maps and music requires stringent temperature and humidity control according to BS 5454 requirements. As part of moisture control measures, a cavity drain membrane system was laid to waterproof the floors and to keep the moisture from penetrating through the floor base. We laid FlexiDry F3 to level the concrete base and to provide a sacrificial layer for laying the delta cavity membrane and underfloor heating on top.
Using FlexiDry F3 ensured a faster drying period of 21 days and helped the cavity drain installers to proceed with the installation of the membrane without delay. The screed construction used was a ‘bonded screed’, where the base slab was prepared by way of scabbling, and water resistant bonding agent SBR slurry was used to bind the screed layer to the substrate.
CSC has undertaken many challenging screeding projects in the past years, but screeding the floors of the Weston library and thus being part of preserving nearly 3 million books and archives was indeed a demanding task. As always, CSC succeeded in giving the best of its screeding solutions. Being part of preserving this storehouse of knowledge was indeed a proud moment for CSC.
To find out more on various screeding options, please visit our website or call us, our team would be delighted to help you.