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Greater London House Spine Staircase

John Horton : Concept, Design and Project Management of Manufacture and Installation

Client: Diapo Stairs for Arcadiam Associates Ltd / Y&R WPP Group


At first glance this striking ‘Centre Spine Staircase’ may look quite simple, but its external shapes hide some clever engineering and very precise fabrication work. As a type, the ‘Center Spine’ or ‘Mono Stringer’ Staircase is often a difficult nut to crack,  they seem like a good and modern idea, but can often look quite bulky and clumsy in execution. In this case, the stair had to span a relatively long 6 meters (unsupported), meaning the ‘Center Stringer’ would have to be quite substantial and very heavy looking.  The elegant solution to this was to construct a triangular closed monocoque Stringer made from a relatively heavy gauged steel plate.  We complemented this shape with ‘origami’ like seamless folded Treads, which invisibly bolt to the ‘Central Spine’ Stringer. The Treads are inlaid with Stone and combined with a side mounted Toughened Glass Balustrade and a continuous Stainless Steel Handrail to both the stair and landings.