Molecular Sciences

University of Birmingham

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Project Value:

£55 million


Key Points

65% – 35% Office to Laboratory Split

Space for 500 Researchers

3,700m² High-Quality Laboratory Space

BREEAM Excellent

Just the beginning...

Molecular Sciences is a new flagship facility for the University of Birmingham, strengthening their core research capabilities by creating a “fizzing intellectual atmosphere in flexible science space that will help transform working practice, with a focus on challenge-led thematic research.”

Phase 1 forms part of an established a masterplan to create the campus’ largest development to-date. Once complete, the development will provide a 50,000sq.m environment fit for world class research in the chemical, environmental and biomolecular sciences.

The focus of the first phase is on provision of facilities for innovative academic and postgraduate research in fields such materials science, drug discovery and water and air quality management. It will provide a designated hub for the School of Chemistry along with facilities for the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences (GEES).

Flexibility Built In

Plans for the scheme have been developed with significant considerations towards the future, both in the flexibility of the design and with regard to future phases that will allow the University to meet their aspirations for the continued redevelopment of the wider site to support provision for various science-based research and education.

Inherent ‘built-in’ flexibility is always an important consideration for long-life buildings. In this instance (with facilities for highly specialised and dynamic research) getting the right approach is crucial. Through the detailed briefing and technical design, we have worked closely with stakeholders and specialists to achieve this.

Phase I has been designed to provide a fantastic research environment and high-quality landscape in its initial standalone configuration, but also for seamless connectivity with the remaining phases of the masterplan, with continuous floor-plates, coordinated service infrastructure within an attractive and connected landscape that will transform this part of the campus.

This project is the first of up to four phases that is transforming the site of the former Munrow Sports Centre and sits between two other Associated Architects-designed projects, the Main Campus Library and University Station.

The BREEAM Excellent rated building features almost 13,000 square metres of laboratories, offices, meeting spaces and associated infrastructure, and provide specialised accommodation for over 500 researchers.