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Biological Sciences Extension Building

University of Essex

The £1.68 million extension to the Biological Sciences Faculty provides new offices, laboratories and meeting rooms for the Biological Sciences department. Partially dug into the steep slope, the extension plugs into the end of the existing 1960's building with circulation leading directly from the old building into the new. Perched on the southern end of the building is a specialist controlled-environment greenhouse for scientific research.

The new extension attempts to reinterpret the original building's rhythm and proportions, while using a local palette of materials that reflects contemporary environmental concerns. A heavy base of flint cladding and landscaping ties the building into the ground, contrasting with the rendered upper section with large horizontal windows for natural light and ventilation.