Default Hero Subpage

Brighton beach pebbles



Exemplary Laboratory and Technology facitilies

The Sevenoaks Science & Technology and Sixth Form Building provides exemplary laboratory and technology spaces for students

The client’s brief was for the building to be an inspirational exemplar of sustainable design in order to support the science education at Sevenoaks School. The school required the building to meet the requirements of BREEAM Excellent, as well as having low running costs and providing excellent comfort for study and examinations. Comfort was assessed using 2050 medium emissions scenario weather files to provide climate change resilience.

The passive design necessary to create naturally ventilated, well daylit teaching spaces was carried out as part of an integrated design approach whereby the architecture responded to the environmental needs. Teaching laboratories are orientated to reduce the depth in order to maximise daylight penetration, and the façade accommodates the required window and vent sizes. The sawtooth roof and open atrium deliver glare-free north light throughout the spaces.

The thermally massive structure is naturally ventilated to provide good thermal comfort year round. In the physics lab, natural ventilation openings incorporate light-proof louvres to allow for experiments which require blackout. Active cooling is avoided to most spaces by adopting solar shading blinds behind fixed windows, generous daytime natural ventilation rates and a night ventilation strategy to purge heat from the exposed concrete soffits. The central atrium acts as a lung, permitting efficient cross ventilation to all teaching spaces via acoustically attenuated permanently open vents. Those spaces which may be more prone to overheating have low carbon cooling provided by borehole water circulating through fair-faced concrete soffits. After it has cooled the spaces, this borehole water is recycled for WC flushing, reducing water consumption. Heat loss is minimised by insulation and airtightness levels which are 25% better than required by building regulations.

The MEP installation is tightly coordinated and integrated, sympathetic to the building's high architectural aspirations. Services are distributed horizontally around the perimeter of the building, serving individual rooms via a raised floor void, permitting long term flexibility to rearrangement of rooms with minimal disruption to adjoining spaces. Heating, cooling and lighting are all demand controlled and there is a centralized BMS to provide control, monitoring and optimization of control algorithms.

The design team have been fully involved in the handover process, testing functionality, operation and dynamic response of the building systems. The building will be monitored and adjusted through the initial 12 months of operation and a post occupancy review will be carried out to assess the operation of the systems and the need for any proposed further adjustments.

What people are saying about FOOTPRINT+

What people are saying about FOOTPRINT+

  • FOOTPRINT+ is the place to showcase how we can build sustainable developments and reduce the carbon footprint of building projects. In tackling the climate crisis, these are the conversations we need to be having.
    Peter Kyle
    MP for Hove, Shadow Minister for Justice
  • Despite the global impact of COVID-19 the UK property industry is resilient. FOOTPRINT will provide a forum for everyone to create a deliverable agenda for sustainable growth in the UK property market.
    Francis Hilton
    Pelican Developments
  • The construction sector has a huge role to play in enabling Local Authorities to meet ambitious carbon zero targets. I believe that FOOTPRINT will be the event that supports the creative discussions and working relationships required to achieve Zero Carbon living.
    Duncan Baker-Brown
    Architect, Lecturer at University of Brighton & Campaigner for Circular Economy
  • At last an event that addresses the key issues facing design, construction and development in the UK. The rich mix of consultants, clients, stakeholders and government together with the great location will make Footprint a huge success.
    Paul Monaghan Director of Allford Hall Monaghan Morris Architects
    Liverpool City Region Design Champion and founding member of Architects Declare
  • The idea of the jobs fair on the last day is brilliant. It's exactly what school and university leavers need, and as a CDO, I realise that finding high calibre candidates to work for your organisation is a hugely time absorbing process.
    Adam Brockley
    Founder of Scape Student Living
  • As we move to create the ‘new normal’ post Covid, we have an unprecedented opportunity to re-write the rules around our environmental impact on the planet, this conference does exactly that.
    Gavin Stewart
    Executive Director Brighton & Hove Economic Partnership
  • FOOTPRINT is a hugely exciting opportunity to address the climate emergency which we all face as global citizens.
    James Blakey
    Planning Director Moda Living
  • FOOTPRINT+ has been set up to answer a need in the property market. We have all traipsed off to the South of France previously to meet up and discuss property issues. This is no longer a responsible action given the carbon footprint of getting there. Combined with the exit of Britain from the EU, we, in the UK market need to meet and discuss our national and international concerns. FOOTPRINT+ is set up to permit us to do this in an accessible, affordable and responsible way
    William Edgerley
    Director Edge Ahead Limited