Case Study: Fire Retardant Shade Sails, Oakhill College
A leading independent school based in Sydney’s west, Oakhill College was seeking to redevelop an underutilised area on the school grounds. The goal was to transform the space into a multi-purpose facility, capable of supporting a diverse range of activities, from lunch breaks and social events, to outdoor classes.
To enable their vision, the school engaged Alfresco Shade to manage the installation of a shade structure significant in both size and complexity.
Having worked with Alfresco Shade in the past, key members of the school decision making committee were confident they could deliver against the project objectives.
The size and nature of the project presented several challenges for the team at Alfresco Shade. The area to be covered was constructed over an old swimming pool, therefore requiring careful planning around excavation and installation.
Bleaches built at the edge of the space were popular for both students and teachers alike, and covering them would mean the sails would need a 33 meter span, rather than the standard 30. This in turn necessitated larger columns to support the sails’ weight, with a diameter of 323mm.
Through consultation with the Gale Pacific team, Alfresco Shade recommended Commercial Heavy 430 FR. The high strength fabric was ideal for this application given its size, and being fire retardant, it gave the school added piece of mind
“We recommended Commercial Heavy 430 FR based on its strength and fire retardant capability. We’re seeing increasing demand for FR fabric in several sectors, particularly councils, and some segments within the education industry.
Ben Westcott, Alfresco Shade
Commercial Heavy 430 also features an exclusive Cancer Council endorsement. It’s engineered in Australia to withstand extreme weather conditions on large scale tension structures, and made with a 100% round monofilament yarn, supported by a patented intertwining knit pattern.
With the bulk of the installation done over school holidays, the team at Alfresco Shade were able to minimise disruption for the school.
Oakhill College now has a multi-purpose space that can accommodate a range of activities and functions. Visually the area now has a modern, welcome appeal that offsets the college grounds, and the school community has peace of mind knowing the shade sails are both fire retardant and Cancer Council endorsed.