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Client

University of Kent

Location

Canterbury

Sector

Education

Services

Quantity Surveying

Value

£27M

The new academic building for Kent Business School (KBS) and the School of Mathematics, Statistics & Actuarial Science (SMSAS) created a vibrant new campus destination, bringing together academics, students, researchers and administrative staff from KBS and SMSAS.

The building accommodates departmental space for Kent Business School and the School of Mathematics, Statistics & Actuarial Science, including academic workspaces, researchers’ workspace and administration and reception areas. It will also house teaching and learning spaces, including 3 lecture theatres, seminar rooms and dedicated MBA and IT suites. The scheme includes new social learning spaces, along with a café, breakout spaces and a staff terrace.

The hub of teaching, learning and working allows two of the University of Kent’s most successful departments to expand and improve their current activities, as well as strengthen their position within the higher education market place. Most importantly, it will offer KBS and SMSAS a new home to express their identity and character.

Challenges.

The site of the building is situated in the heart of the university’s campus and is contained in the Park Wood area, which is home to important woodland and ecological habitat. Through careful consideration and design, the scheme evolved and has been able to be carefully constructed to maximise the potential of the site, whilst minimising any issues around ecology and arboricultural matters.

Collaborative working.

The scheme was designed by London based architect Penoyre & Prasad, with further design input by Max Fordham and Price & Myers.

Willmott Dixon constructed the scheme, and the commitment to quality and health & safety has been excellent. Final Account was agreed within a month of Practical Completion.

With support from the University’s own estates department, and BNP Paribas as project managers, the scheme has exceeded the client’s brief of providing an excellent new academic building, nestled in the heart of the university’s campus.

Innovation.

The building is designed with a panelled system, with architectural fins, which accentuates the aesthetics of the external fabric. The scheme also includes green roofs, passive ventilation, and flexible work spaces within the office zones.

The building is built in concrete, allowing for the thermal mass of the structure to maximise heat retention in the winter in minimise overheating in the summer.

The spaces formed inside the building are grand in their scale, whilst toned to provide a comfortable space to learn and teach.

Awards.

The scheme has achieved a number of awards including

  • 2017 World Architecture Festival Awards, ‘Higher Education & Research’: Finalist
  • 2017 Blueprint Awards, ‘Best Public-Use Project with Public Funding’: Shortlist
  • 2017 AJ Awards, ‘Higher Education Project of the Year’: Shortlist
  • 2017 Civic Trust Awards: Finalist.

 

Project team.

  • Architect

    Penoyre & Prasad

  • Structural Engineer

    Price & Myers

  • Services Consultant

    Max Fordham

  • Contractor

    Willmott Dixon