THE WOLFSON WING, JODRELL LABORATORY
ROYAL BOTANIC GARDENS, KEW, U.K.

Client: Royal Botanic Gardens Kew
Architect: Wilkinson Eyre Architects

 
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The Jodrell Laboratory is one of Kew’s most important research facilities. Here scientists carry out studies on plant anatomy, cytology and biochemistry. An important strand of the work they do is to find ways of using plant resources for the benefit of humans. The project integrates Kew’s Mycology, Palynology & Economic Botany sections by improving and extending the existing Jodrell Laboratory. The new building provides additional laboratory space and re-locates and consolidates several research libraries. It also houses the largest and finest collection of mycology specimens in the world.
The additional 2,200m² of accommodation is arranged as two storeys over a single basement. As the building is passively ventilated, floor and roof slabs are left exposed to view to allow the structure to exchange heat as air flows across its surface. Floors are composites of pre-cast and cast in-situ concrete and are supported by a steel frame which is also exposed to view.

Principal: Nirupa Perera
Project Engineer: Louise Quick

 

2007 RIBA Regional Award
2008 Civic Trust Award

 "An extension to the existing laboratory, this scheme raises the profile of Kew's research work. The scheme brings together the laboratory's staff in one building. Attractively designed, the scheme creates a three sided courtyard focused on the Aquatic Garden, which gives a collegiate feel to the complex. Home to laboratories, library and office space, the building also enjoys a spacious and airy atrium space which provides breakout space for staff. The atrium also creates a successful transition between this extension and the existing building. Popular with staff, the scheme includes passive cooling and is naturally ventilated, creating a comfortable working environment. With high attention to detail, this scheme is a valuable addition to the facilities which support Kew as a world class research institution."