Work to build a new Technology Entrepreneurship Centre at the University of Nottingham is about to begin, following the announcement that planning permission has been granted on the project.
After completion – which is envisaged for Summer 2016 – the Technology Entrepreneurship Centre will house key local businesses as well as national enterprises, such as Big Data & Digital, Advanced Manufacturing, Aerospace and Energy. Companies based in the new Centre will be able to take advantage of the University’s leading centres of excellence in these areas and the ready supply of high quality postgraduate students.
Matt Hutton, Lead Designer and Associate Director at Bond Bryan Architects, the architectural practice on the project, said:
“Our brief was to create a building that encourages and supports innovative forms of collaborative working and learning. We envisaged that this would increasingly require more adaptive and flexible spaces that offer a range of potential working, meeting and learning environments ranging from structured group discussions and facilitated presentation areas, through to more informal self-study areas. A key element of the building proposal has therefore been to develop a concept that offers the ability to create a diverse mix of spaces, from large open plan areas to more cellular offices and specialist practical zones.”
Bond Bryan’s solution has been to create a simple, relatively deep plan building form that makes maximum use of the limited available area on the site in order to control the overall height of the building and create efficient floor plates. An atrium heart- space is cut into this simple form, not only enabling daylight to penetrate the floor plates, but crucially allowing views across the building, visually linking the activities on the different floors and creating a range of spaces; from contained single storey spaces for smaller scale and cellular activities, through to double and even triple height open plan spaces where necessary.
Externally the design seeks to create a distinctive and exciting building typology delivered within an economic solution. It reflects the historical significance of the site whilst simultaneously replicating the modern contemporary surrounding buildings, providing a high quality statement building for the University.
On working with Bond Bryan, Robert Scott, Operations Director at the University of Nottingham Innovation Park commented:
“We were Immediately impressed with the imagination and innovation of the Bond Bryan design proposal, as it has a real WOW factor. It is great to find a very professional design team, who were able to interpret our requirements and changes as the design evolved.
The University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir David Greenaway, said:
“This is outstanding news for the University. The new Technology Entrepreneurship Centre will provide space for start-ups and early stage businesses. Entrepreneurs will be able to access expertise from across the University, which will help them develop innovative new products and services and give them a crucial competitive edge.”