Cavendish III.

University of Cambridge, UK

Matthew Chambers, Partner at Hoare Lea

Project Lead:
Matthew Chambers

Under the microscope of high-spec laboratories.

On the site where atoms were split, sub-atomic particles discovered, and DNA unravelled, a brand new state-of-the-art, leading physics facility is being built. Designed to help the University of Cambridge continue to operate on the world stage of science and research, the Cavendish III building is a no-compromise high-specification facility.

Calculations for the future.

Not only is the project technically complex, it’s also a large-scale build. Added to this, many of the individual laboratories (with often conflicting requirements) are adjacent to each other. Strong collaboration between the design and client teams allowed us to test these opposing constraints thoroughly. We have utilised our skills in creating virtual environments to articulate our design ideas to the users and have held face-to-face workshops to help the whole design team understand better the pressures and concerns of other teams.

The physics of constraint.

Thanks in part to a paper put together by our firm’s Richard Brimfield, the client agreed to install a Ground Source Heat Pump (GSHP) system. Not only will this reduce operational energy for the life of the building, it’s also a robust and resilient solution for the required 24/7 operation of the Department of Physics.

We have proposed and agreed an advanced four-year ‘soft landings’ programme via our Performance group. The project is only just starting Stage 3, so there is still a long way to go and many challenges to overcome. However, we have worked closely with the client to overcome significant challenges to date and achieve a successful design solution – a great achievement for a scheme of this scale.

Key Figures
24/7 Operational department
140+ Years of ground-breaking research
37,160m² building