Complete Self-Storage Fit-Out For Brand New Facility In Barking


Complete Self-Storage Fit-Out For Brand New Facility In Barking

This brand new self-storage facility in Barking was part of Shurgard’s ever-expanding portfolio.

The Project

The building ‘shell’ and floors were built by a construction management company and our client commissioned USS to carry out a complete self-storage fit-out for the facility which consists of 8 floors including the ground floor. 

Our Client

This complete fit-out project was undertaken for Shurgard Self-Storage, for their brand new facility in Barking. Shurgard operates 240 locations across 7 countries. They are expanding their portfolio and targeting locations in and around London. This facility was a newly constructed “shell” so meticulous attention to detail in the design and planning for the interior layout was critical in order to expedite the project successfully.

The new Barking facility is in one of Shurgard’s recently targeted geographic areas for expansion and is located close to the A13, a major road linking Central London with east London and south Essex.

What We Did

Shurgard provided USS with the architect’s drawing and proposed layout outlining the required unit placements within the facility.

Shurgard provided a very descriptive standard document and along with this and the architect drawings/proposed layouts USS were able to make suggestions. This also included highlighting areas that would not physically work in practice and recommending alternatives.

For example, there were instances where the proposed partitioning and unit size was not possible to implement due to the location of columns. In such cases, USS was able to make adaptations and changes to the plan where practical. This might be something as simple as changing the door style to solve a door/column conflict. These adaptations and changes were possible because our self-storage system is modular and flexible by design, this made it easy to offer practical solutions during the design phase. Once the 2D Cad drawings were complete, they were sent to Shurgard for approval.

shurgard 4 ceilings

USS was awarded the work and our Project Managers were assigned to oversee the smooth running of the project. A USS manager was on site every day throughout the installation process.

The fit-out included:

  • Floor decking.
  • Fire protection consisting of a boarded ceiling, column and beam encasements, stair enclosures.
  • Storage unit partitions to form units with a mixture of swing and roller shutter doors for 1204 Units.

Meeting Fit-Out Challenges


The building is tall (8 floors). Ordinarily, materials would be loaded internally using a large forklift. Due to their sheer size, a forklift used inside a facility requires dismantling prior to removal from the building as it’s not possible to drive the forklift out. Using this method has the disadvantage of leaving a hole in the floors (through the centre of the building) which has to be refitted after the forklift removal.

To solve this problem we used external motorized hoists for external loading preventing damage to the internal floor. It also saved engineer time as dismantling a forklift was unnecessary.

Unit Partitioning System

Over 1200 units were installed incorporating roller and swing doors.

shurgard 2 roller shutter

The installation used the customer’s branding. White inside and red, where visible from the outside.

Lipped doors were installed to prevent gaps between the door and the door jamb.

Some of the units are externally accessible (though not external units). This is an added convenience for tradesmen who want to drive up to the door and unload (in a similar way to a garage).

shurgard 3 accessible external

USS also installed the unit numbers and aisle navigational signs. We designed and supplied the artwork for signage.

And Finally

This was a very smoothly executed project with minimal snagging issues. The project was delivered to schedule and on time.

We Are Happy to Say

We are very pleased with the outcome of this project. The hard work, insights and advice provided by the USS team played a crucial part in the team effort that ensured our new Barking facility opened on schedule.

Simon Phillips

Construction Manager, UK

Shurgard Self Storage