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Mezzanine Floors – Your Questions Answered in this Complete Guide

May 14, 2020 | Mezzanine Floors

What is a mezzanine floor?

A mezzanine floor is a custom-made semi-permanent structure constructed within a building to provide an upper level floor or even multiple floor levels. The new floor is placed central to the ceiling and ground floor creating a new level of usable space without affecting the main structure of the building. The basic mezzanine structure is made up of a network of vertical steel columns supporting the decking above. The upper level is not boxed in by walls so the ground floor can be seen from the mezzanine level with exposed edges made safe with handrails and in fills. Whilst a mezzanine floor can cover up to a third of the ground floor footprint area it is not classified as an official part of the building. Two tier mezzanine floor

What does a mezzanine floor look like?

Although the structure itself is quite basic,once complete with lights, flooring and decor a mezzanine floor can look perfectly aligned with the rest of the building interior. A mezzanine floor can transform the space making it light and airy with various options of accessories, floor type and lighting available so you can customize the look of the mezzanine.  WSL have a team of experienced designers who can go through the various options which will result in the look you desire for your completed mezzanine floor. You can read more about our design process here warehouse mezzanine floor

How do you access a mezzanine floor?

Most mezzanine floors are fitted with staircases and as a mezzanine floor manufacturer, WSL also manufacture staircases to suit both the look and practicalities of the mezzanine floor. Depending on the size and use, some have multiple staircases, some are side staircases, some are central and some are Y shaped. Some mezzanine floors are also fitted with passenger lifts, goods lifts, chutes and pallet gates to safely transport people and goods to and from the higher level. Means of access to a mezzanine floor will depend entirely on the intended use.See our guide to choosing mezzanine floor access staircase

What can a mezzanine floor be used for?

The main purpose of a mezzanine floor is to create more usable space within the buildings footprint so for industrial and commercial properties this is an ideal solution when space is becoming a squeeze but relocating or expansion is not an option. A mezzanine floor in a retail environment is often used for product display, overstock storage, customer cafe, staff facilities or an office. For warehouses and manufacturing a mezzanine can be used for storage, office space, staff facilities or production areas. Every mezzanine floor WSL produces has its own intended purpose and because no two businesses or premises are the same, neither are two mezzanines so your mezzanine will be specifically designed by our design technicians to match your unique requirements in terms of use, space and operations retail mezzanine

How much weight can a mezzanine floor safely hold?

Mezzanine floors are custom-made to support their intended use therefore weight bearings will vary from one mezzanine floor to another.  For example a standard 150 square meter office may take 54,000kg whereas a production or storage mezzanine of the same size may take 75,000kg. The size and the intentional use will determine how much weight a particular mezzanine floor will take. If a mezzanine is to be used to accommodate storage structures such as racking and shelving or to allow the usage of heavy machinery WSL can design the mezzanine around these factors before manufacture and installation to ensure it will carry the required weights safely.

Does a mezzanine floor need planning permission?

Generally a mezzanine floor does not require planning permission because it is built within the structure of an existing building however the approval of specific building regulations is required in relation to fire safety, accidental fall prevention, structural safety and access. As part of our services WSL take care of this on your behalf so you have one less thing to worry about. You will however receive all documentation relating to your mezzanine floor Building Regulation approvals.

Does a mezzanine floor need to be fire rated?

Not all mezzanine floors require fire rating. This will depend on whether the mezzanine comes under the official determinations set out by Government Building Regulations which require legal compliance. The size if the mezzanine floor and the number of people using it are contributing factors. Your WSL expert designer will take responsibility for ensuring any legal safety regulations including fire rating is taken care of.

Will my mezzanine floor project require an appointed Principal Designer and Principal Contractor?

The installation of a mezzanine floor is categorized as a construction project, therefore you as the proprietor and project instigator must by law ensure that a Principal Designer and Principal Contractor is appointed. The Principal Designer is responsible for health and safety, planning, and organisation during the pre-installation phase. The Principal Contractor is responsible for health and safety, project management and coordination during the installation phase. WSL has the proficiency and experience in Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015 (CDM) to act as Principal Designer and Principal Contractor for your mezzanine floor project.

All our design technicians and project managers combined their wealth of experience with the completion of intense tuition of CDM (2015) resulting in qualified certification. The CDM 2015 Regulations outline the legal responsibilities of all participating individuals and are in place to protect the health, safety and well-being of all persons involved during every phase of the project. As a business we take our responsibilities around health and safety very seriously which is why our compliance to CDM 2015 Regulations is paramount

Team taking CDM 2015 Course

How long does the process of a new mezzanine floor take?

This depends on the size of the mezzanine floor however in the instance of a relatively small single tiered mezzanine the process can be complete in a matter of weeks. Once the plan is approved and the order is placed our factory will immediately receive instructions to begin manufacturing the mezzanine. Our installation team will be on site ready to take delivery of the mezzanine floor which is sent direct to site from our Leeds based factory. The installation process can be complete within a week, however size, multiple tiers, and fire rating and other regulations would require more installation time. During the initial consultation our technical designer will advise you on the expected lead time for your particular project.

The mezzanine will require a host of additional fittings, can WSL manage this too?

Yes. WSL appreciate that once fitted you will require lighting, smoke alarms, intruder alarms and we can take care of this for you. We can also take care of heating system installation, sprinkler systems, office fit outs and storage system. Turnkey project management is a daily occurrence here at WSL and is considered by many clients as a valuable service. By allowing your dedicated WSL project manager to coordinate your entire project you will save time, lessen stress, minimise paperwork and keep on budget by eliminating unexpected costs from third parties.

How much does a mezzanine floor cost?

When considering a mezzanine floor project cost will likely be high on the list of many questions, after all how can you plan such a project without knowing what the cost will be? Because mezzanine floors are custom-made the cost will depend on a number of factors such as the number of floor levels, size, access requirements, weight bearing and regulations. Because of this,we advise you to discuss your potential mezzanine project with one of our experienced design technicians during a free, no obligation consultation at your site. Here you will gain a more accurate understanding of the likely cost as well as receiving advice and having all your questions answered there and then.

A mezzanine is a semi-permanent structure – does that mean it can be moved to another building?

It is possible to move a mezzanine into a different building however, this isn’t as straight forward as it sounds. You would need to consider the following: size and style, will it fit the new building? Will it be used for the same purpose as before?  If not; will the current weight bearing limit safe for the new purpose? Will access requirements change? You may need new flooring once the original has been taken up and adjustments will likely be needed in many areas. The costs involved in relocating a mezzanine floor can add up so it would require careful thought and plenty of planning beforehand. See more on this here.

Is a mezzanine right for my business?

If you need more space for your business and expansion or relocating is not feasible then a mezzanine floor could be the ideal solution. You can create new, much needed space in a short space of time with minimal disruption without an increase in the building rate costs. A mezzanine floor is a cost effective solution which will transform your space completely improving the environment for you, your employees and visitors and will increase productivity.  A member of our highly experienced design team can visit your site to examine your space, take measurements and discuss your requirements to advise you on what options are available to you.

Why should I purchase a mezzanine floor from WSL?

WSL appreciate that a mezzanine floor is a significant business investment. Our client centric process means your requirements and satisfaction are at the forefront of everything we do.  Although we have been operating for over 30 years it was 13 years ago we entered fabrication for this very reason. We pride ourselves in our ability to design a mezzanine to suit your exact requirements before our talented engineers manufacture the mezzanine to those specifications before being professionally installed by our team. All our mezzanine floor steel sections are designed and manufactured using the most stringent design code BS5950-1:2000 with cold rolled sections to BS EN 1993-1-3 and UK National Annexes. Your whole project is managed from start to finish by your dedicated project manager who is on hand to answer any questions at any point and keep you informed at every stage. mezzanine manufacturing As a full SEMA member and CE Marking BSEN 1090 accredited we guarantee only the highest standards of safety and quality.   Do you have further questions related to mezzanine floors? Call Brian Varley today on 07587 035 034 or email brv@wslmail.co.uk Related Articles Could a Mezzanine Floor Transform your Logistics Operations? Canvasman Praises WSL Communications Throughout Mezzanine Project Mezzanine Floor Safety – What You Need To Know About The Law

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