Anglia Ruskin University’s Cambridge Campus used to be shared by the Cambridge Regional College and the former technical college. With its new University status, and increased student numbers, Anglia Ruskin needed to house up to 300 students on site, within a framework which would allow for a rolling programme of faculty developments. We were commissioned to prepare a development scheme, which included a model of the whole site and computer illustrations of the effect of the new buildings on views from adjacent gardens. Subsequently the accommodation was developed under a design and build contract.
NRAP were appointed as consultants to a Cambridge-based group assisting in the foundation of a Centre for High Technologies in the grounds of Tashkent University, Uzbekistan. Initially it is to be based in a wing of an existing building constructed at the end of the Soviet era. Existing claddings were removed and replaced by insulation and a new external skin with high performance windows. A new lecture room is situated on the upper floor.
The building has been completely re-serviced re-using existing ducts, and a new wing added with a café to encourage contacts between academics and visitors. This important social space is at first floor level over a porte-cochère entrance, and is designed to operate well in the very different climatic conditions experienced between winter and summer. People passing between research laboratories and meeting and office spaces engage with the social area at every level.
As well as providing 450 dwellings, the site to the north of Canterbury will act as an extension to the village, providing amenities such as allotments, playing fields, a local centre and a number of pocket parks and public orchards. The new development, arranged as a loose grid of small blocks, clustered around the green spaces, will achieve a density varying between 25 and 50 dwellings per hectare. Densities at the perimeter – where the development meets the existing village – will be low and will build up towards the heart of the new development. A tree-lined avenue, prioritising pedestrians and cycles, will link the new and old areas of the village and will continue to the southern development site.
“Thanks for all your hard work on this project. This is a real landmark and a success — we have a really good-looking, functional design for the first phase at the right sort of price and it fits with a well-considered long-term plan for the site. Brilliant!”
Philip Guidford, May 2009
We were commissioned by the University of Cambridge’s Department of Engineering to undertake a feasibility study to investigate the capacity of their central Scroope House site. We undertook this in two stages and reported to the University’s Estate Management Service as well as to the Head of Department. Numerous meetings were held with members of the separate divisions in this, the university’s largest department.
The Scroope House site has been patched up in an ad-hoc manner over the years, and we aimed to show how its efficiency could be enormously improved by rationalising its circulation and initiating a process of phased re-development. The second stage investigation examined alternative design proposals in detail.
We showed how important it was to use first phase accommodation as de-canting space to allow future phases to take place. Subsequently, to cater for its ever-expanding needs, the Department has started on a new building on an adjacent site, leaving the problems of the Scroope House site as yet unresolved.