Architects: Bond Bryan Architects
Bond Bryan Director: Darren Southgate
Project Managers: Turner & Townsend
Services Engineers: CPW
Civil/Structural Engineers: RPS
Construction Value: £150 million
Gross Internal Floor Area: 20,000 square metres
BREEAM Sustainability Rating: Very Good
One of the former Labour government’s more lasting legacies was to help revitalise advanced manufacturing production centres in the UK. Under the well-advertised Project Nelson proposal, four projects were conceived to promote the retention of aerospace, defence and civil-nuclear production capability in the UK.
Winning three of the four projects in this programme, our Civil Nuclear Project commission was to design a facility that could deliver very specialist and advanced and large-scale “nuclear island” products. The facility has two distinct elements: a high bay environment standing 40m high for the assemble and testing of large-scale components and a low bay building standing 25m high for the manufacture of large-scale vessels.
This was a challenging brief with structural elements required to support the movement of the enormously heavy manufactured components. The chosen site was also extremely challenging with man made ground up to 60m deep; a series of foundation options were considered before massive pad foundations were chosen to distribute the substantial loads.
As part of the site optimisation strategy, vehicle servicing required an approach that is almost unique to this type of production environment. Sixty wheeled “Mammoets” require significant turning and manoeuvring capability around the production zone and careful thought is needed to avoid excessively large and sterile external servicing yards.
Using corporate building design standards, this building is seen as part of a growing family of similar styled facilities. Using consistently profiled and organised panel systems, roof products and coordinated louvres, its identity is very recognisable.