• £2.8m Micro-Bio Refinery Laboratory, University of Liverpool

    Client: University of Liverpool
    Value: £2.83 million
    Architect: Fairhurst
    Completion Date: March 2013
    Services: Civil and Structural Engineering

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    Refurbishment of an existing 1950s multi-storey Donnan laboratory building to create a series of highly services linked laboratory rooms at the second-floor level.

    The project was awarded £2.83million from the Regional Growth Fund to establish an open access micro bio refinery research facility. The project aims to promote environmentally sustainable operations and presents the University and extends the capabilities of the Centre for Materials Discovery.

    Constructed in the late 1950’s the Donnan Laboratory required extensive refurbishment to remove redundant equipment, asbestos and redundant MEP equipment. Isolation of redundant laboratory services and drainage numerous builders work repairs to the existing floors and for this reason the non-structural screed had to be removed to ensure the floor finishes could be laid to the meet the exacting tolerances required for the vinyl flooring.

    Various small structural steel insertions were necessary to enable the floor integrity to be maintained, allowing the repairs to be undertaken to the floor. Significant supplementary air handling plant was provided at roof level; and the long-span roof structure had to be assessed for additional load and the need to improve and provide safe access for maintenance.

    Key Points:

    • Existing operational building
    • Laboratory refurbishment
    • Supplementary plant and builders work re­quirements to service the new labs
    • Out of hours intrusive investigation of the structure
    • Significant asbestos removal works required