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University of Manchester Schuster Annexe

Developing entrepreneurial flair

Road view of the University of Manchester Schuster Annexe-Building showing its exterior façade

Responding to unprecedented growth in the demand for Physics education, the annexe will be a centre for excellence in STEM teaching and learning.

People sat in chairs in the Ideas Mill teaching space at University of Manchester Schuster Annexe-Ideas Mill

The Schuster Annexe connects to the existing Schuster Building, famed for being the place where the material graphene was isolated by Nobel-prize winning professors in 2004. The new building provides seamless and barrier-free connections for all staff and students of the Physics department. At the heart of the building is the Ideas Mill. This flexible teaching space surrounded by social areas is designed to encourage cross-disciplinary projects, and extend the possibilities for new teaching modes and outreach activities of the department.

People sitting in breakout spaces within Ideas Mill at University of Manchester Schuster Annexe
The building has been a step change in improving the student experience. One academic commented that her group was working better and there was more collaboration and interaction between the members.
Students collaborating in a lab at University of Manchester Schuster Annexe

A glazed screen to the southern gable of the building looks onto the park and creates a distinctive marker to the campus. Mathematical Voronoi patterns across the glazing hint at the activities taking place within.

Two people wrking in the teaching laboratory at University of Manchester Schuster Annexe
Hawkins Brown-University of Manchester Schuster Annexe-interior detail-Voronoi pattern screen
The concept was for an innovative collaborative and flexible space suitable for active teaching and events with industry or for public engagement. We helped to turn this concept into reality with a highly flexible space that delivers the brief and much more.
External façade dusk shot at University of Manchester Schuster Annexe-
Interior social space at University of Manchester Schuster Annexe

Project details

Project name: University of Manchester Schuster Annexe

Location: Manchester, UK

Value: < £20M

Scope: Architecture, Interior design

Clients: Arcadis, University of Manchester

Status: Complete

Completion date: 2017

Accreditation: BREEAM Very Good

Contractor: Willmott Dixon

Structural engineer: WYG

Environmental / M&E engineer: WYG

Quantity surveyor / Cost consultant: Arcadis

Project management: Arcadis

Acoustic engineers: WYG

Landscape architects: Planit-IE

If you want to know more about our work in Northern England, contact Katie Tonkinson

If you want to know more about our interior design work, contact Morag Morrison