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Durham Gateway crowned Outstanding at the Environmental Awards Share this article

Cundall has been praised for its multi-disciplinary engineering contribution to a flagship project for the North East. The Durham University Gateway Project has been crowned ‘Outstanding’ in this year’s County Durham Partnership Environment Awards.

Cundall provided a range of engineering services, including :

'Rewarding great design, environmental guardianship and community spirit in County Durham',  The Outstanding Award is discretionary and is only awarded when the judges consider that a project has exceeded excellence across a range of environmental criteria.

By winning the award, Cundall has been recognised for its contribution to design and architecture on the Gateway project, the Bill Bryson Library extension and the Palatine Centre.

The judges award the prize for the ‘ambitious and comprehensive redevelopment of the Durham University Science Site based on environmental, economic and social sustainability. The scheme includes the building of the new Palatine Centre, new catering and social facilities for students, staff and visitors, a new law school, extension to the library and comprehensive environment improvements’.

The redevelopment of the university’s main library was part of the major redevelopment of Durham University’s Stockton Road Campus. For the library, the project involved the demolition of the existing library’s east wing, to allow for the new extension, and partial refurbishment of the existing library. The project was split into three phases to allow the library to remain open, minimising disruption to students. A new flagship sustainable building that provides a gateway to the University’s Stockton Road Campus which includes a state-of-the-art student services facility, new accommodation to the Law School, a catering facility were also built.

BIM software was utilised to improve collaboration and integration with the team.  This technology was used throughout the design process to ensure coordinated architectural, structural and building services designs. The models were merged on a regular basis to check for coordination issues, including running clash detection analyses.

The site had a number of challenges, including: three mineshafts, relocation of two electricity substations, and major services and drainage diversions required.

John McArdle,  Partner in Newcastle who attended the awards ceremony said, “Cundall is delighted to be part of the design team selected by the University to undertake this flagship project which has been used to showcase the University’s environmental and sustainable credentials. It is very pleasing to receive the award where the team’s significant contribution is recognised by their peers.”

County Durham Environment Partnership Environment Award judge, and environment and community director at the Banks Group Mark Dowdall said: “We are delighted to be able to recognise the excellence of so many inspirational projects that are making such a positive impact on the environment of County Durham. Durham University’s Science Site has incorporated sustainable principles throughout its design and development and these principles are now a benchmark for future developments within the university.”