New science building
25 March 2008
Planning permission granted for new Byrom Street development
LJMU has received planning permission to develop a new purpose built science building at its Byrom Street Campus.
Once completed in 2009, the development will enable the University to consolidate the majority of its teaching and research in science and technology within one strategic Liverpool city centre site, following the relocation of its School of Sport and Exercise Sciences and the School of Psychology.
Around 50% of the new building's 6,400 square metre floorspace will be given over to specialist teaching and research laboratories, with the remainder being used for teaching, IT suites and staff accommodation.
Access to the building will be via a double height foyer with cascading staircase and small cafe. An interior "box", on the lower and upper ground floors, will house specialist sport and exercise science labs. Many of these require very controlled environments and minimal natural light, such as the sleep lab (or temporal isolation laboratory), which is used by LJMU scientists analysing the role of the human body clock to manipulate waking and sleeping cycles.
Professor Michael Brown, LJMU's Vice Chancellor said: "The laboratories and advanced facilities in this new building will enable us to take our science research, particularly in the area of sport and exercise sciences, in new and exciting directions."
Given Byrom Street's varied topography, architect Dominic Wilkinson says that it has been a "challenging project" but one that he hopes will set "a high benchmark for future developments".
LJMU's School of Sport and Exercise Sciences is ranked as the UK's number one for both teaching and research in this field. The specialist facilities housed within the new building reflect the School's elite status and will include an indoor 70-metre running track and labs for testing cardio-vascular ability, motor skills and bio-mechanics functions. The building will also have additional biochemistry and psychology teaching labs.
Whereas the labs are highly specialised in design, the general staff and teaching accommodation is designed to be very flexible. As far as possible, layouts have been 'future proofed' to ensure that they can be easily adapted for different uses, with ancillary uses and services clustered together in designated zones.
Work is due to start on the new building in April 2008, with completion due for the start of the first semester in 2009.