Aston University Engineering Academy

Location Birmingham, UK
Services Building services and fire engineering, sustainable design, acoustics, lighting design and vertical transportation
Sector Education 
Client Lendlease
Architect Fielden Clegg Bradley Studios
Imagery © Steve Mayes

Alec Stewart

T +44 (0)121 262 2720

Aston University Engineering Academy is a new 6,500m² facility in the heart of Birmingham, dedicated to engineering disciplines. Its principle sponsor is Aston University, located a few blocks away. It has strong ties with the university in terms of education delivery, shared facilities, and cutting edge equipment and resources.

Cundall has been involved with Lendlease and Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios from the outset of the scheme to advise on services and environmental issues and help develop the concepts for the redevelopment of the site.

The site was chosen for its inner city location, and proximity to the university; however, it was also a huge challenge for the design team because of its proximity to Birmingham’s busy inner ring road.  The location demanded that the building to be fully mechanically ventilated and cooled due to high external noise levels and air quality issues. Fresh air is drawn into the building from roof level and opposite the roads, whilst the windows are high performance sealed units.

The existing basement structure on the site was originally seen as an unusable hindrance to the scheme. However, it enabled us to develop an innovative thermal labyrinth and basement plant driven services for the scheme. This resulted in substantially reduced cooling energy requirements and freed up the need for any significant plantroom space above ground, enabling the architecture and aesthetics of the building to continue uninterrupted on all four sides.

The scheme was eligible for the Department for Children Schools and Families' carbon reduction funding, and Cundall developed an energy strategy that was tailored to meet the academy’s engineering aspirations. This includes a 50m² PV array, a gas fired CHP plant, low energy lighting and lighting controls, and a highly efficient cooling system. The building services engineering will be an integral part of the building, incorporating vision panels, engineering displays, energy screens, and student web access to the BEMS and the design stage thermal model.

  • RIBA West Midland Regional Awards 2013

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Our people sit at the very heart of what we do at Cundall. Our mission is to provide great opportunities for great people, create fantastic built environments and leave a positive legacy for our communities.

It is the knowledge and expertise of our people which helps us to do this; our commitment to recruiting and nurturing great talent is what has made us successful for the last 40 years and it remains critical to our future plans.

At Cundall, we place special importance on our early careers professionals (graduates, apprentices, interns and more), understanding that they are the future of our business and the key to our long-term, sustainable growth. 

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Cundall's expertise extends to all major markets, so we have a deep understanding of the specific issues, constraints and opportunities facing our clients' market sectors.

Our team of creative engineers draw on our accumulated knowledge to devise the best possible solutions for your project in a fully integrated and cost-effective way.

About us

Established in the UK 40 years ago, Cundall has developed into an international multi-disciplinary consultancy operating from over 20 locations across the globe.