Works complete on ground-breaking medical research centre at University of Nottingham

Midlands contractor G F Tomlinson is celebrating the completion of a pioneering project at the University of Nottingham – delivering a major expansion to the Centre for Biomolecular Sciences that will house vital research into the treatment for cancer.

As part of the works, a new state-of-the-art facility has been constructed, located on the University Park Campus. This will provide world-class laboratories, offices and meeting rooms for academic and postgraduate students and staff, for research into identifying new breakthroughs in the treatment and diagnosis of serious diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular, liver, bone and respiratory conditions.

Spanning five floors, the 65,000 sq ft new-build flexible research centre is the third phase of the development by the University to its Centre for Biomolecular Sciences. The centre has been constructed to satisfy demands for increased biomolecular research and re-enforces the University of Nottingham’s position as a global hub for breakthrough medical research.

The new facility will allow several research groups, previously spread across six of the University’s sites, to work under the same roof. This includes groups in Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Cancer Science, Respiratory Genetics and Pharmacology.

This is the eighth project completed at the University of Nottingham by G F Tomlinson; with the company currently working on a number of educational and public sector projects across the Midlands.

The new centre at the University of Nottingham was built with sustainability at the forefront throughout; being constructed to the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) standard of ‘excellent’.

Specialist curtain walling has been used for the building to provide high-level insulation while also blending into the external building façade. There has also been the installation of rooftop plantrooms, two green roofs, photovoltaic panels and brise-soleil sun screens – ensuring undesired heat and light do not enter the building.

A bridge link has also been built to connect the centre at its third floor to the adjacent Boots Science Building. This is as well as a new bridge from the existing Centre for Biomolecular Sciences to the new expansion.
G F Tomlinson started works on site in 2017, investing in several social value initiatives throughout the project. This included offering two 40-metre tower cranes for high-rise fire training for officers from Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service, as well as hosting a Bowel Cancer Awareness Day for G F Tomlinson employees, the supply chain and University staff.

The contractor has provided 450 hours of work experience, as well as investing over 33,000 hours into social value throughout the project. This includes an investment of 15,371 hours into skills and training; 1,063 hours into environmental protection; 16,961 hours for community support; and 325 hours into sustainable procurement.

Managing director of G F Tomlinson, Andy Sewards said:

“Having worked with the University of Nottingham on a number of projects, it is incredible to see the impact that the works have across the campus and for its many students and staff members. Their breakthrough research into biomolecular sciences is revolutionary, and the new centre will help increase their capability as well as the profile of the University.
“As a regional contractor, delivering higher education projects is key to our business and we are proud to say we have delivered such an important facility for the future of medical research. Well done to all the team for their hard work and dedication, which has evidently paid off to deliver this amazing project within the initially predicted timeframe.”

G F Tomlinson worked alongside Buro Four as project managers, cost managers Gleeds, architects Benoy, WSP Safety Ltd as the principle designer and M&E engineers.

Director of the Centre for Biomolecular Science, Professor Chris Denning commented:

“I would like to thank all the staff from G F Tomlinson who worked on this project. They displayed a huge amount of professionalism and were a pleasure to work with; accommodating our many requests for site tours and to show our funders around this incredible facility.

“This expansion provides many exciting opportunities and allows the researchers in our Centre to be at the forefront of an interdisciplinary effort to deliver our vision – that through chemical and biological discovery and engineering, we will diagnose, treat and cure disease, and provide security for quality of life.”

Senior Capital Projects Manager at the University of Nottingham, James Hale added:

“It is great to see the expansion complete and further our vital offering at the Centre for Biomolecular Sciences. The new world-class facilities will allow us to meet the demand for increased biomolecular research, and strengthens the University’s strong reputation as an international centre in the field. I would like to thank all those involved in the project, including G F Tomlinson, for helping bring our plans for the University to life.”

Director of Buro Four Project Managers, David Boles said:

“We are incredibly proud to have project managed this exciting project which will provide such opportunity for the University, students, region and the field of Biomolecular Sciences. We particularly enjoy working with universities to deliver complex and highly functional science and research facilities where collaboration is at the heart of strategy, and this project meets all of those aspirations.”