project case study

Newhaven UTC

This project in Newhaven saw the transformation of a locally listed building, originally used for marine maintenance, into a university technical college (UTC).  The site included two Grade II listed buildings, a carpenter’s workshop and a warehouse marine servicing building whose facades had to be maintained.

Complex delivery in a marine environment

Due to the site’s marine environment both buildings were susceptible to flash flooding and although the buildings were listed their original foundations were unusable. Another design challenge was that the buildings are in flood risk zone 1 so flood protection measures had to be included in the design with close attention paid to how the scheme would be delivered on site.

Forming a new building within an existing one

The challenge for this project was solving how to put in a whole new structure within the existing one and deliver four new floors of space for the UTC in the existing warehouse footprint and a new mezzanine level in the carpenter’s workshop.  To deliver this scheme, we used modern methods of construction to construct the building within a building.

Designing for public sector delivery

Our focus couldn’t just be on design but also working closely with the local authority appointed contractor to ensure there would be delivery excellence and a high level of safety on site during construction. We had to make the most of a tight public sector budget and be clever with how we made use of the available funds. As the building was to be a technical college, we chose robust materials that could withstand heavy duty use. Creative touches were introduced throughout the design with a mix of contrasting brickwork and colourful renders which matched the UTC’s colours and created uniformity. Throughout the project we had many discussions with the heritage officer and local authority. For historical preservation purposes, we restored and reused one of the original gantry cranes in the new UTC entrance way.

The completed UTC in Newhaven project won a local heritage award.

Year 2015

Sector Education

Location Newhaven, East Sussex

Client Department for Education

Value £11m

Scale 4,800sqm

Notes 600 pupils