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Nicola Blake

Nicola Blake

Architect , 5th Studio

Nicola is an architect at 5th Studio, leading decarbonisation and retrofit projects for university estates. For Darwin College, Cambridge, she is detailing fabric improvements to listed buildings and designing an energy centre for low-carbon systems supplied by the river. At St Hugh’s College, Oxford, she is working on a masterplan to achieve net zero operational carbon emissions, as well as address spatial planning and biodiversity. 

Nicola also teaches an undergraduate design studio at the University of Cambridge, exploring the adaptive reuse of existing buildings and ways of achieving density in our cities while minimising demolition and embodied carbon.


5th Studio work across the fields of architecture, urban design, infrastructure and landscape. We collaborate with our clients and commissioners to create beauty and enduring value from complex situations. We apply our spatial intelligence to a broad spectrum — from delivering buildings through to research and strategy. We strive to be visionary, innovative and persuasive.

Our missions are to create well-designed building and places, foster a more equitable society, make the most of the heritage and culture of existing environments, enhance the natural environment, and accelerate the urgent transition to a zero-carbon future.