New Architecture Studio, The University Of Cambridge, 2007

This building provides a new undergraduate studio and workshop for one of Britain's top schools of architecture. The building expresses the Department's commitment to sustainable design; it is constructed entirely from timber, and cooled using innovative radiant ceiling panels with a system that exchanges heat with the ground. Connected to the listed Georgian terrace, it is also adjacent to the seminal 1950's extension designed by Colin St John Wilson, and close to existing protected trees.


photography: David Butler, Peter Cook


The studio was design in collaboration with Professor Marcial Echenique, and architects Freeland Rees Roberts, who took responsibility for the overall contract and the refurbishment of the listed Georgian terrace. The department needed to accommodate the Martin Centre for Research within the existing terrace, and sought a single space for all undergraduate teaching. The location of the building was sensitive; in the garden of the listed building and adjacent to protected trees.  On top of this the relationship to the previous 1950’s extension was critical, with a requirement to retain sufficient space around this much-loved building, considered to be the first example of Brutalist architecture in the UK. The new studio expresses 21st century concerns, and is built in timber rather than concrete.  The building is an example of low energy architecture that operates in a simple way, with natural ventilation operated by the occupants. Thermal comfort is aided by heating and cooling via radiant roof panels, the cooling in the summer coming from geothermal heat exchange.



  • David Urwin Award 2010 Winner
  • RIBA Award: Shortlisted
  • RIBA Spirit of ingenuity Awards 2008: Shortlisted (Education)
  • RIBA Spirit of ingenuity Awards 2008: Shortlisted (Sustainability)
  • IStructE Awards: Shortlisted (Education)

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