Junction 2, Cambridge
[Our] level of production turnaround [is] only possible with the grid – it’s a hugely cost effective way of working.
An 8.6 metre wide by 18 metres long Cablenet tensioned wire grid installed at 6.4 metres above the main stage and auditorium of the Junction 2 Theatre in Cambridge.
With no intermediate members below the grid - it’s completely clear to the venue floor - and capable of supporting 250kg vertical loads. It’s believed to be the largest grid of this type to date in the UK.
Robin Townley, Development Director of Junction 2 knew at the planning stage that full flying facilities were not needed for the type of productions they would be staging, so sought a flexible and practical solution for rigging and working at heights.
Above the Cablenet, a network of interim building supports act as hangers for all the theatre’s overhead lighting fixtures, spread right across the space. This gives the light beams a completely clear path to the floor below (through the grid) without hitting any additional structural elements or other obstructions. This is a particular bonus to lighting designers and technicians alike. Data, power and other production services are delivered to boxes attached to each hanger in a slick, neat and well managed system.
They can fly ‘through’ the grid at Junction 2 via 2 bars on 350kg hoists and four hemp line sets. Six parallel rolling beams running the length of the grid allow the suspension of load bearing structural elements at any point over the grid utilising a 1 tonne hoist. A point load of 1 tonne or a distributed load of 6 tonnes can be accommodated.
Coupled with the grid resolution of 35mm between the tensioned steel cables, it’s possible to fly anything anywhere in the space.
Apart from maximising staff resources for get ins and outs, the tensioned wire grids also allows Junction 2 shows to introduce more complex equipment and rigging requirements into an ever shrinking production window!
- Architect: Plowman Brown
- Main contractor: SDC
- Theatre consultant: Carr & Angier