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Alison Richard Building – Cambridge University



We have recently completed the design and construction of the new school of Humanities, Social Sciences and Arts – known as The Alison Richard Building, for our long-standing client, the University of Cambridge.


The project has created a four-storey teaching, research and library building, with basement, which as well as dedicated research areas, provides a café, a suite of shared seminar rooms and open plan post graduate areas. The atrium acts as an important reception area for national and international visitors as well as a hub for conferences and exhibitions.


The scheme was developed on a collaborative basis, with our long term relationship developed with the University allowing us to efficiently & collaboratively overcome any issues arising, and utilising open book accounting which enabled the initial design to be enhanced from BREEAM ‘very good’ to ‘excellent’.

Our Commitment:

The Highly Sustainable BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rated building is ‘super insulated’, utilising low carbon technology, ground source heat pumps and a complex BMS system to monitor and adjust water and heat requirements.

Rare trees on the site were carefully protected throughout construction, with the landscaping schemes designed to improve the natural biodiversity of the area ,enhanced by a ‘no works’ policy during the bird nesting season and the introduction of bat boxes.

The scheme also received a Considerate Constructor score of 36.5, with initiatives such as noise level monitoring, ensuring that levels did not exceed a maximum of 85db – equal to average traffic noise from inside a car.


BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating


‘In over forty years of working in universities I have never known a building meet with such unalloyed approval. Both beautiful and functional! From start to finish the team has been terrific and deserve every congratulation’

Professor Willy Brown, Head of the School of Humanities

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