The Wellcome Trust, Cambridge


Commercial Fit-out


The Wellcome Trust


10 months

Pound sign


The Wellcome Trust Genome Campus is set in the idyllic grounds of the Hinxton Hall estate, south of Cambridge. The Campus plays host to scientific research, courses and conferences, and a publicly accessible nature reserve. The project consisted of the removal and reinstatement of glazed curtain walling, complete internal demolition of two internal free standing floor structure within the area, including all structural elements.

The internal existing structural elements were constructed with a column and ring beam method with RC slab spanning through the beams, in 5 goal post sections spanning in excess of 11 meters. One of the main project challenges was the existing structure, which could not be removed with traditional percussive methods due to the connecting buildings which have calibrated machines that were sensitive to this method of works.

CGA had to adopt a method of working with a Brokk with pneumatic jaws to crunch the concrete out when working on the slabs, however the Jaws would not open wide enough to get around the concrete the columns and ring beams. When faced with this we reverted to core drilling and pneumatic bursting of the beams to brake the concrete into smaller bits. Upon completion of the works we removable in excess of 380 tonnes of concrete and 80 tonnes of RE-Bar.

During the removal of the existing structural element we had to adopt the use of a Bobcat skid steer with a 1 tonne scoop. This had to run across a live foot path that was maintained throughout the duration of the project. We adopted a traffic marshal system and a cross road with fences to ensure a full segregation between the many campus staff and heavy plant movements.

The finishes consisted of a new curtain wall system with mullions that were in excess of 600 KG each and low energy glass panels of 500 KG. These were connected to the existing roof structure via new high level steel work and adapted base concrete plinth. The deliveries had to be planned in accordance with the campus movements throughout the installation due to the geographical location of the project. The internal new structure was constructed with rolled steel beams and columns to create the new ground floor offices. Above this the upper floor and bridge link connection was constructed with a Holo rib deck slab and testing Met sec box design to form the two offices and circulation spaces. This box was designed to carry all the upper ceiling void mechanical load and ceiling installation.

The internal free standing structure had structural glass partition openings on both sides and 552 individual bespoke acoustic panels with 479,361 perforations covering the entire free construction and balustrades to form a DNA molecular 3d pattern. To cover the structure, each panel had to be site measured from the design drawings to ensure full coverage and that the design concept fitted the sub straight.

In addition to the new internal structural steel frame and met sec structure, CGA also provided ceilings and partitions, specialist structural glazing and acoustic panelling, new ceramic factory bonded raised access floor, complex Exor lighting, new fire alarm and Vesda system integrated into the existing satellite system trend of the campus. A new AHU on the roof had to be craned into position over a weekend and the old AHU removed to ensure minimal disruption to the campus.

Throughout the works our project team have had to be considerate to the surrounding occupied areas and CGA have adapted operations in order to have minimal disruption to the Campus staff as possible. The Shared Services Facility now provides break out areas, a coffee bar and classrooms.