NRAP Architects are pleased to announce the completion of a multi-million pound highly innovative project to refurbish and extend EF Language School on Hills Road in Cambridge. Proposals were 5 years in the making and received planning permission last summer. Balfour Beatty, the main contractor, started construction last Autumn and completed the work in a little over 14 months.
The progressive design creates a relaxed and studious atmosphere. Twenty naturally lit and naturally ventilated classrooms are arranged on two levels around a series of linked communal spaces and a double height atrium. Translucent glass screens in place of white boards allow projected images to be simultaneously viewed in the classroom and the atrium space. North-facing roof lights within the extension provide a high level of natural lighting without generating glare or overheating. Floors have been removed within the retained building to create a dramatic triple-height space in the heart of the institution. Elsewhere floor levels have been adjusted to allow disabled access to every room. The relatively compact layout and deep plan creates an energy efficient envelope, enclosing well-lit and generous spaces. Sustainability measures also include an array of solar cells on the roof and high levels of insulation within the new extension.
This year NRAP Architects are celebrating 25 years in business. The completion of this building is certainly something for them to celebrate.