The project is a high-quality office development won in a limited competition in March 1995.
The building provides 5400m2 net of air-conditioned space on six floors above ground, with additional office space on a lower ground floor, for £7.6 million.
The building lies in a conservation area, immediately north of Broadgate. The practice analysed the indigenous building type of the area, namely warehousing, and interpreted it as a modern framed building. This approach ensured that planning consent was gained within six months.
The building is highly efficient and its floorplate configuration is suitable for dealing desks or conventional cellular offices, to allow for a wide range of tenant requirements.
Construction is of grit-blasted reconstituted stone columns and beams, shot-peened stainless-steel intermediate columns and finely detailed clear glass projecting bays.
The interior is fitted out to Category A, with high-quality materials in the reception area, stairs and wcs.
Occupation is due in May/June 1998, following a 15-month construction period.
West Cambridge Development Plan for Cambridge University
The practice has been appointed by Cambridge University to masterplan sites of 66ha for science departments and related research organisations. The sites will also accommodate sports and social amenities, university residences and a park-and-cycle facility.
The development represents a major shift to the centre of gravity of the university, away from the heart of the city of Cambridge, and has important implications for both the university and the town.
mjp's aim is to provide a framework supported by design guidelines which will ensure coherent development and create an environment which promotes interaction between those involved in academic and commercial research. The masterplan must also have sufficient flexibility to accommodate the designs of future architects and the changing needs and aspirations of the university through a 30-year development period.
The masterplan involves consideration of a wide range of issues, such as social and intellectual interaction - creating a lively community; visual character; planning issues - the site adjoins the green belt and is crossed by protected views to the city centre; ecology and landscape design - the site includes designated City Wildlife Sites and Wildlife Corridors; transportation and parking - management of pedestrians, vehicles and bicycles within the site and beyond; infrastructure - the development will have a major impact on existing services, particularly foul and surface water drainage; phasing and flexibility.