What is a Mezzanine Floor? | Mezzanines Explained | Hi-Level Mezzanines

What is a Mezzanine Floor? | Mezzanines Explained

A mezzanine floor is an intermediate floor which is built between two main floors or the floor and ceiling of a building. They are designed to cover a specific area of a building rather than extending over the entire floor space. Mezzanines are installed to maximise unused vertical space, providing additional room above and below and can be built free of existing structures. Industrial settings are some of the most common places a mezzanine is built due to their high-ceilings and are usually free-standing, semi-permanent structures. Mezzanines are often custom-made, manufactured from detailed drawings and tailored to the needs and specifications of a client. Typically, mezzanines are constructed from steel and can be tailored to suit their settings.

Key components of the mezzanine:

  • Primary beams – These are the main support of the mezzanine which span across the columns
  • Purlins or joists – These spans between the primary beams are the fixing points for the decking
  • Columns – They are designed to support the primary beams and the load bearing is distributed evenly across the columns which uphold the mezzanine
  • Decking – The 38mm particle board is the most commonly fitted option, however other varieties include OSB, grating, durbar plate, concrete and composite decking

Mezzanine Floor Ancillaries 

This secures the exposed edges of the mezzanine. For industrial premises, edge-protection includes both the handrail and toe plate. For public-facing environments, the most common design is a glass balustrade system.




The staircase provides access to the mezzanine floor and comes in a variety of designs for industrial premises and public use. The UK Building Regulations determine which type of staircase a building will need, taking into consideration the number of persons, travel distances and fire protection.



Pallet Gates
Many industrial environments opt for pallet gates to assist with loading and unloading materials onto the mezzanine floor. The pallet gates are designed to protect personnel at exposed opening points at the floor edge.




Fire Protection
Based on the UK Building Regulations, the appropriate fire protection will be applied to the mezzanine design. Generally, fire protection is required for all circumstances where the mezzanine is used for anything other than storage e.g. offices/public use.




Where can a mezzanine floor be used?

Industrial Premises
Industrial buildings such as warehouses, distribution centres and factories typically have large building structures which enable full flexibility to install large and complex designs. A range of businesses integrate a multi-tier mezzanine, often using one level for storage or office space and the second level for production purposes.



Public-facing Premises
Mezzanine floors are a very popular feature within public facing environments such as retail stores. This is due to their ability to increase sales per square foot and provide storage in the back end of the shop. Retail stores pose more stringent regulations as the mezzanine is often designed taking into consideration the existing store layout. In addition, the floor must be fire rated and the type of stair-casing and handrail needs to be suitable for public use.



How much loading can a mezzanine floor take?

Depending on how it will be used, a mezzanine floor can be designed to take a loading up to 3,000kg/m². The type of decking will also greatly affect the point load as the 38mm particle board will be ideal for most standard installations whereas the composite decking is designed to be extremely robust and durable. Learn more in our video below:

About Hi-Level

Hi-Level designs, manufactures and installs bespoke mezzanine floors predominantly in commercial and industrial premises throughout the UK and Europe. With over 28 years of experience in a wide range of industry sectors, our team are truly experts at what they do. Throughout the project, you are appointed an experienced Project Manager who will ensure all operations run smoothly. Your contact will assist with any possible contingencies, keeping you in the loop to guarantee a successful project. We have a genuine passion for what we do and are committed to delivering the highest quality product and service.

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