Newcastle University’s Urban Sciences Building is a ‘Living Laboratory’, a test bed for research ideas, experiments and industry partner collaboration. The 12,500sqm building will be the first independent Newcastle University building to be built on the 24-acre Science Central site, the former home of Scottish & Newcastle Brewery.
The building organises a variety of high quality teaching and research spaces around a central forum, designed to welcome students, staff and public to the building to share ideas.
As a centre for urban sustainability research the building is highly sustainable itself. Based on the loads generated, the building is electric powered, with future connections to the district heating plant possible. It integrates features such as rainwater harvesting, renewable energy generation, water source heat pumps and each roof terrace is designed for collaboration or research. Embodied carbon calculations have been carried out to determine the most efficient structural and façade solutions.
A modular, façade system has been proposed to reduce on-site waste. Patterning to the facades, designed in collaboration with an artist, provides shading to prevent over-heating in summer months and create a unique identity for the building.