A topping out ceremony has been held to celebrate a major milestone for the 17,000 sq m new low energy Social Sciences building for the University of Sheffield that will provide shared facilities for the whole faculty as well as bespoke accommodation the departments of sociological studies, economics and politics. This will bring together major research centres across the faculty to encourage collaborative working and help address key global challenges.
Designed by our team, the project aims to meet the future growth demands of the Faculty up to the year 2035, through creating a world class, sustainable building that reflects the faculty’s reputation for excellence in teaching and research. The design embraces the idea that ‘every learning space should be active’ and therefore includes shallow raked large volume learning spaces that support both traditional and active learning alongside technology rich group working areas and individual study spaces. Close engagement with the University staff and students has created a forward looking, flexible learning environment that supports modern methods of learning and users mental health and wellbeing.
Achieving a BREEAM Outstanding rating, the building design includes ground source heating, photovoltaic panels, low water fittings and high thermal mass to reduce its energy use. It has green roofs and rain gardens as part of a sustainable drainage scheme which will also enhance the biodiversity of the site. It has been praised for its positive contribution to both economic and social sustainability which includes the creation of a neighbourhood pocket park, cafe and flexible facilities that can be used by local residents.
Lucy Plumridge, Associate Director at HLM, said “The design of this world class facility reflects our focus on creating more sustainable places and being able to assist our clients in delivering developments that enhance the lives of local communities and add social value. We look forward to seeing the final result.”
The scheme is due to open in 2023.
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