Hybrid construction for Capella Laboratory, Cambridge
The building is being designed to provide world class scientific and research facilities with a stringent requirement to minimize vibrational effects when it is occupied and in use due to the very sensitive scientific equipment that will be installed.
PCE Ltd’s approach has embraced this and by using BIM techniques has allowed the integration of an extremely complex services strategy. This includes the pre-installation of the main services routes and package plant along with the integration of a precast facade solution with pre-installed glazing.
The resultant structural frame design adopted is generally precast columns with a combination of precast concrete edge beams and structural steel Delta Beam spine beams, supporting 300mm deep hollowcore planks and a 300mm reinforced insitu structural concrete topping.
“PCE’s detailed approach to developing smarter hybrid structural solutions, as with Capella, continues to win the company significant new business with the Kier Group” – Simon Harold Business Development Director.
The PCE approach
The structure will be built using two cranes on a confined site with a relatively small footprint between two existing and in use facilities.
The fast erection programmed is much shorter than other suitable structural frame solutions would have allowed: along with the reduced onsite workforce required – as well as reduced lorry deliveries typical of offsite construction – the potential of disruption to other users of the Addenbrookes site will be reduced.
“Project Capella is a great example of how lean construction techniques can be used in the development of a project to get it from the drawing board and into construction in the shortest timeframe.”
About Project Capella
The £79m research facility in Cambridge is aiming for a BREEAM “Excellent” rating, according to the Construction Enquirer website.
It reports that the building will accommodate “the Cambridge Stem Cell Institute, Cambridge Institute of Therapeutic Immunology & Infectious Disease, The Milner Therapeutics Institute and Cambridge Centre for Haematopoiesis and Haematological Malignancies.”