The building is part of the ongoing development of the Clifton Campus, with the accommodation providing a mixture of laboratories, workshops, teaching areas, meeting rooms, offices, technical spaces and support areas.
The building comprises two distinct elements, each with their own user group. As a result the University was keen to have two entrances which would allow each user group to have their own identity within the building. Each feature entrance is cranked to address the respective square/plaza that is adjacent to them.
A simple central corridor divides the plan in half allowing two strips of space along each edge of the building. This methodology provides long-term flexibility for the building with each side capable of being divided into smaller or larger spaces as required, across the building’s lifespan. The structural philosophy has been developed in order to facilitate this long-term flexibility which helps to create a building in line with a ‘long-life, loose-fit’ philosophy.
Each main entrance is highlighted by a double-height opening in the ‘bookend’ facade which reveals a ‘lining’ to the opening alongside a double-height glazed atrium space beyond. Lighting elements in the soffit ensure that these spaces are brightly illuminated after dark to create a glowing beacon, advertising the building’s entrances in a welcoming manner.
The ‘bookend’ elements are clad in an anthracite coloured zinc standing seam which contrasts with the silver metallic cladding used on the remainder of the building helping to delineate the main entrances.