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nottingham trent university

September 2016
Architect: Evans Vettori Architects
Main Contractor: G F Tomlinson
Sub Contractor: Phoenix Brickwork

Pavilion and Teaching Suite, Nottingham Trent University

How has Evans Vettori solved the conundrum of creating an award-winning social ‘heart’ to a University Campus?

As part of the university’s bold regeneration programme, Architects Evans Vettori were given the task of redesigning the brand new threshold to Nottingham Trent’s Clifton Campus that would modernise and replace the existing run-down 1960’s teaching buildings.

The brand new Pavilion and adjoining Teaching Buildings successfully achieves the aim of this brief. Over 4,000sq.m of social community and teaching space across 2 levels includes enclosed learning pods, collaborative booths and a coffee shop, as well as new lecture theatres and teaching and seminar rooms that have all been designed to provide a relaxed and collaborative environment for students.

Reflecting the neighbouring northern locality, the walls throughout are clad largely in varying shades of red and grey facing bricks. However, the striking new buildings have been given a thoroughly unique and contemporary identity through the architect’s selective use of contrasting yellow and green copper glazed bricks. The varying colour scheme and bond patterns selected are complemented by the immaculately executed panels of projecting and recessed brickwork, constructed off-site, which create alternating texture and grain which help to break up the large areas of brickwork. At a time when facing bricks were in short supply, the products selected for this project were manufactured especially to order.

Project partners Evans Vettori (architect) and GF Tomlinson (main contractors), certainly appear to have successfully solved the eternal conundrum of how to flawlessly manage the transition between traditional brickwork and brickwork cladding, whilst maintaining a consistent and unified appearance on this scheme. The new ‘front door’ to the Clifton Campus provides gravitas and coherence to a previously disorganised site, and will ultimately culminate as the social ‘heart’ of the campus community.