University College Hospital London, UCLH Building, Architect, UK Healthcare Design, Date

UCLH Medical Research Centre

University College Hospital: Centre for Neuromuscular Diseases, London by Nightingale Associates

16 Nov 2009

UCLH Centre for Neuromuscular Diseases

Nightingale Associates scoops Building Better Healthcare award

University College Hospital : Centre for Neuromuscular Diseases, England, UK

Design: Nightingale Associates

Nightingale Associates received the Patient Environment Class Award for Best Interior Design at the Building Better Healthcare Awards

Nightingale Associates, a leading architectural practice specialising in healthcare, education and science, scooped the Patient Environment Class Award for Best Interior Design of the Centre of Neuromuscular Diseases at UCLH at this year’s Building Better Healthcare (BBH) Awards.

The annual BBH Awards celebrate excellence, innovation and professionalism in the healthcare built environment, looking specifically at building design, the patient environment, people, products and estates and facilities management.

The winning project, the Centre for Neuromuscular Diseases at UCLH, was extensively refurbished earlier this year to provide a stimulating and modern environment in which to conduct specialist scientific research. The centre, which is located in an early twentieth-century central London building, has a ‘contemporary fitting in the classical shell’ design theme, displaying a unique mix of modern architectural design concepts with many carefully-restored original features.

The judging panel recognised the scheme specifically for its interior design, which enhanced the original features of the building and created a contemporary clean impression of the front of house, ensuring patients’ comfort and a pleasant working environment for staff. As a building that facilitates advanced research into its fields, the design needed to be clean, modern and able to accommodate the most up-to-date research technology.

London Office Principal, Neil Murphy, said:

“The success of this scheme can be attributed to teamwork and a clear collective vision from the outset of the project. Our primary aim was to raise the aspirations of not only the centre’s visitors, patients and staff but all building users. This has successfully been achieved through the harmonious interface of both existing and contemporary features.”

Each area of the centre uses flashes of bold, contemporary colours to differentiate between different areas of the building. What were once cluttered and uninspiring areas are now clearly-defined hallways, providing clear links to various parts of the building.

In addition, the building is equipped with many of the latest technological advances, including an AV-connected microscope in the seminar room. Sustainability features include the use of natural light, which was maximized by setting the ceilings as high as possible; internal glazing allows light deeper into the rooms and mechanical ventilation maximises natural air flow. Other features include a staff rest area designed to resemble a street café, open-plan communal corridors and a hot-desk facility for external consultants.

Richard Harrington, Executive Chairman at Nightingale Associates, said:
“Well done and congratulations to all involved in this scheme. Not only is this fantastic recognition for the wide variety of work that we do but also demonstrates our commitment to providing the health industry with innovative, sustainable designs that enhance the experiences of both staff and patients.”

The senior judging panel consisted of: Design consultant, Jane Priestman OBE, RENEW Northwest’s Beatrice Fraenkel, Research fellow of the Helen Hamlyn Centre at Royal College of Art, Ed Matthews, National Chairman of HEFMA, Kevin Oxley, Special Advisor for Health at the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (CABE), Susan Francis.

The awards, which have been running for eleven years, received a record 156 entries this year. The winners were revealed at a grand awards ceremony on 12th November 2009 at the Brewery in London.

UCLH Medical Research Centre London

Nightingale Associates completes pioneering new scientific research centre

13 Jul 2009

UCHL Medical Research Centre UCH Medical Research Centre Medical Research Centre London Medical Research Centre UCH

Practice continues to establish itself as a leader in the science field with opening of ‘old meets new’ central London research centre

Nightingale Associates, a leading architect practice specialising in health, education and science buildings, has transformed University College London Hospital’s (UCLH) existing Medical Research Centre. Designed for the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery and the Institute of Neurology, the centre establishes a patient-focused local, regional and national centre for clinical excellence for the diagnosis and management of patients with Neuromuscular Disease.

Nightingale Associates, which is fast increasing its science portfolio, was earlier this year appointed onto both the Medical Research Council (MRC) and the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) frameworks. The frameworks will consist of a vast range of highly scientific projects, with a combined value of over £1bn.

The £750,000 renovation of the MRC took place over a 21-week programme, which started onsite in December 2008. The centre, which is based in central London, now incorporates research offices, seminar rooms, an outpatient gym, examination rooms and staff rest facilities. The design, which aims to modernise existing facilities set in a traditional building, was carefully detailed in order to create a contemporary and clean impression of the front-of-house, to ensure patients’ comfort and to create a pleasant working environment for staff.

Junko Iwaya, Project Architect from Nightingale Associates’ London studio, said:
“The concept of a ‘contemporary fitting in a classical shell’ was established in order to enhance the features of the original 1920’s building and draw on its well-established history by making a clear contrast with its new contemporary interior.”

The new Medical Research Centre has many features promoting sustainability; the building maximises the use of natural light by setting high ceilings, replacing the roof light and clearing all existing dark paint. The complex also uses internal glazing in order to allow light deeper into the rooms and maximises natural ventilation by fixing the opening mechanisms of its windows.

Innovative features of the centre include a fully-equipped seminar room with AV-connected microscope, TV aerial and PC. The staff rest area has also been designed to mimic a street café, supporting and encouraging the informal discussion of research.

The Medical Research Centre is not the first project that Nightingale Associates has completed at UCLH; in March this year, the practice successfully completed the establishment’s new education centre, a project that combined knowledge and expertise from all three of its core sectors. The UCLH, which is currently undergoing a series of refurbishments, could also hold further opportunities for Nightingale Associates, having played a part in its appointment to the MRC and STFC frameworks.
The new Medical Research Centre at UCLH opened to the public last month.

UCLH Medical Research Centre information from Nightingale Associates

Nightingale Associates

Centre for Neuromuscular Disease
Box 102
National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery
Queen Square
London WC1N 3BG

Location: Queen Square, London WC1N 3BG


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