Sporting success at University of South Wales for Gerflor with Taraflex®

USW Treforest Sports Hall Floor

The University of South Wales (USW) has recently installed 900 m2 of Taraflex® Area Elastic (AE) System vinyl sports flooring in ‘Maple’ from international flooring specialist Gerflor. This high-quality installation was for a replacement floor in the USW Fitzone at their Treforest campus. The project has been completed on time and to budget, and the client is absolutely delighted with the final outcome.

USW has a strong sporting background, an excellent reputation for sport degrees, and impressive facilities for their students to study and train in. At USW they have some of the best facilities in the UK, offering clubs, courses, and qualifications.

The USW FitZone is a state-of-the-art multi-function sports venue open throughout the year. The main hall has six badminton courts, as well as netball, volleyball, and hockey facilities. The gym has over 50 cardiovascular exercise machines plus weight training equipment. There are also squash courts, a studio for dance and martial arts, and a strength room. It would provide a perfect environment where Gerflor’s Taraflex® AE System vinyl sports flooring could make a difference to both play and safety.

Tony Thorne, Gerflor Sales and Specification Manager, South Wales said, “USW were looking to replace their existing timber sports floor due to damages caused by flooding. As they had an installation at USW Nantgarw Sport Park One of our Taraflex Combisport system they wanted costings to install a similar system at the Treforest site.” Tony Thorne added, “We specified 900m2 of our world class Taraflex AE System, as there was existing equipment which included bleachers and doors. As part of the rigorous specification process, we had to meet the same height as the existing flooring. At Gerflor we have timber sports floors within our portfolio, however following conversations with various stakeholders on the project and due to factors, such as non-sport use and high life cycle costs due to the repeated maintenance needed for timber, we specified Taraflex as the floor finish.”

Tony Thorne also said, “Another big plus for installing the Taraflex sports surface was that it had been also previously installed at USW Sport Park One in 2010. In fact, a recent site visit to the Sport Park confirmed that the floor still looks like new and is performing as expected. In addition to this, we have accurate data, backed up from USW Sport Park One, proving our stated low life cycle costs on Taraflex compared to other sports floor systems such as timber and polyurethane.

This is obviously a big consideration factor when it comes to the stakeholders who are also responsible for maintaining the facility over the lifetime of the floor.”

Richard Lewis, Capital Projects Manager at USW said,” We decided to replace the existing sports surface due to a previous roof leak that damaged the floor. Also, the floor was circa fifteen to twenty years old.” On specification, Richard Lewis went on to add, “USW have Gerflor Taraflex installed at Sports Park One, our internationally renowned sports facility in Treforest Estate with great success. It seemed a natural decision to opt for the same pedigree of flooring for the Fitzone facility at Treforest.”

Richard Lewis also commented, “The Taraflex sports flooring has only recently been installed, but it is already exceeding our high expectations. “.

The installation of the Taraflex® sports system would be the responsibility of Swansea-based Artisan Flooring who have installed Gerflor products on previous projects. Artisan Flooring Limited opened for business in 2005 as a Specialist Flooring Contractor covering South Wales. Artisan Flooring has a credible experience of delivering projects in various contract sectors including Schools, Universities, Student Accommodation, Hospitals and Offices.

Lewis Williams, Contracts Manager, Artisan Flooring said, “We received the initial enquiry from the University of South Wales via their procurement team, as they had already specified Gerflor’s Taraflex sports flooring for the project.”

On the on-site installation Lewis Williams went on to comment, “We had a team of two fitters to conduct the laying of the Taraflex vinyl sports floor with the actual vinyl element of the of the project meeting our expected timescale. The Gerflor Taraflex floor was extremely easy to work with and allowed us to carry out the job without any problems at all.”

Lewis Williams also said, “The Taraflex sports flooring from Gerflor is happily meeting our expectations on performance and as a sports floor is totally fit for its purpose.”

Taraflex® AE systems are area elastic floors consisting of undercarriage construction topped with Taraflex® Surface. A cradle and batten substructure, comprising of 40 mm leg height recycled rubber crumb cradles, 43 x 43 mm treated kiln dried, softwood battens, 20 x 150 mm expansion foam perimeter strips and 2400 x 600 x 18 mm spruce plywood. With a number of differing build ups, the product can be configured to suit the project. Ranging from a low-profile non-adjustable system with just a 22mm profile, right up to a cradle and batten system suiting voids from 55mm to 180mm and beyond. Taraflex® Surface is a compact vinyl sheet sports floor covering consisting of a D-Max™ surface – Gerflor’s own complex made up of calendered polyvinyl chloride (PVC) sheets reinforced with a fibre glass grid for high durability and outstanding dimensional stability.

With a complete range of shock absorption ranging from P1 all the way through to C4, Taraflex® sports floorings from Gerflor provide the right solution every time and deliver optimal safety and comfort for users. The combination of D-Max™/D-Max™+, CXP™HD foam and undercarriages ensure that Taraflex® sports floorings are durable and high-performing. Taraflex® also meets the EN 14904 Standard which is the minimum performance requirements to be met by indoor sports floors. Its objective is to draw attention to the necessity of installing safe, floors that reduce the risk of injuries.

Taraflex® sports flooring has been fitted at every Olympic Games since 1976. Approved by many National and International governing bodies as a world class sports surface, it is also widely installed within the education, community, leisure, health, and fitness sectors. Taraflex® is ideal for new build projects and refurbishments and is extremely durable and cost effective to maintain. Over 6 million pupils everyday enjoy the benefits of Taraflex® sports flooring as it delivers a versatile range that can be used for various multi-specialist applications.

On procurement Richard Lewis said, “According to Tony Thorne at Gerflor due to the way we procured the flooring i.e., our Letter of Intent from USW we exceeded production timescales. For me that’s a good example of partnering and collaborative working which really helped with the project timescales and successful completion.”

Line marking for courts and sports plays a pivotal role in most sports halls that host an abundance of varied sporting activities. This important piece of the USW sporting jigsaw would be the responsibility of Sale-based CMUK Flooring Ltd.

Since 2007, CMUK Flooring have become a well-established, trusted business offering complete packages for flooring supply and installation, restoration and maintenance, timber floor sanding and sealing, together with providing high quality court marking services.

CMUK flooring Company Director Gareth Jones commented, “We have worked on a sub-contract basis for Artisan Flooring for many years completing line markings on their sports flooring. Artisan asked us for a price to install the markings and USW logo on the new Gerflor Taraflex flooring system.”

Making further comment on the project Gareth Jones went on to say, “Upon realising the install was an existing facility with a timber floor, we advised we could remove the existing timber floor to re-use in domestic/commercial properties, meaning that the old floor would not be going to landfill giving less environmental impact.”

On performance Gareth Jones said, “We have had absolutely zero complaints about the functioning of the Taraflex sports floor and as we expected it’s performing excellently.” On the appearance the final look of the project Gareth Jones further commented, “The photos of the finished project show how much of a transformation this facility has had. We collaborated with the client updating the set-out of the courts to give a better functioning facility and the hall has now been fully modernised and looks fantastic. “

Gareth Jones concluded, “The USW project was a large undertaking at short notice but working together with Artisan Flooring we got the install completed on time and on budget. It was a great opportunity to collaborate closely with both Artisan Flooring and Gerflor to produce something so special.”

Lewis Williams ended by saying, “We would choose Gerflor’s Taraflex again as it’s always been a reliable brand especially when it comes to sports flooring. It’s a great product to work with. We were really proud of the final result and the job that our fitters did. Mark Williams who is one of our directors and myself managed the project from beginning to end which was extremely satisfying.”

On a final note, Richard Lewis said, “We would, based on our experience at Fitzone and Sports Park One, definitely specify Gerflor’s Taraflex sports flooring again. We are extremely happy with the final look and performance of the flooring.”

Learn more about Gerflor solutions, ask for a free sample or contact us to speak to a specialist today by calling 03332 412901, emailing, or visiting for the latest innovations.

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