Building new biology research and teaching facilities

The original Darwin Building, part of the School of Biological Sciences, is a 10-storey tower block within The University of Edinburgh’s King's Buildings campus. It was originally built in the 1960s.

The enabling works and extension form part of the university’s strategic project, ‘Building a New Biology’. This will grow the research and teaching capacity, quality and outputs to support intellectual discovery and generate health, social and economic benefits.

After our enabling works are complete, the Darwin Building will be refurbished and re-clad to provide world-class research and teaching space for students and staff.

Enabling and extension works

To facilitate the project, we assisted the university with financial analysis and recommendations that allowed additional funding to be claimed.

As part of the project, we carried out demolition of an existing two-storey Darwin Library Building plus various out-buildings. In addition, we created an access haul road and diverted mechanical and electrical services, and underground utilities services.

Robertson Central East worked closely with colleagues at Robertson Civil Engineering to deliver these enabling works. That in-house partnership forms part of the reason Robertson was successful in winning this high-profile contract.

Robertson Central East also built a three-storey extension to the university's C H Waddington Building and a new two-storey mechanical and electrical plant building.

Throughout the project, Robertson has worked with the university on additional requirements, including dealing with unknown services under the ground and resolving the challenges of working within a live university environment.

The University of Edinburgh is committed to developing low carbon buildings. Sustainability features included at the C H Waddington Building extension include:

 

Paving the way for state-of-the-art facilities

Robertson’s enabling and extension works pave the way for the university’s vision for further development at King’s Buildings, which will centre on the 10-storey Darwin building. This can now be re-engineered to improve appearance and sustainability, and double its capacity providing laboratories for up to 350 researchers.

 

Related news

  • Engineering students get to grips with l...

    Engineering students get to grips with l...

    Engineering students at Edinburgh University secured a work placement with Robertson after lending their skills to a live project.
  • College students swap classrooms for con...

    College students swap classrooms for con...

    Students from Edinburgh College have taken their learning out of the classroom thanks to a partnership with Robertson. 

Related blog posts

  • How do we demonstrate the social value of construction projects?

    How do we demonstrate the social value of construction projects?

    Find out how social value is at the heart of everything we do, and we create long-term social value from the projects we deliver.
  • How CAFM can save you time and money

    How CAFM can save you time and money

    How capturing information about building assets during design and construction phases can save time and money in the long term.
  • Facing up to the home truths of the housing crisis

    Facing up to the home truths of the housing crisis

    The current housing crisis is a well-publicised and widely discussed issue within political and industry circles...