Bond Bryan Architects receive planning permission for the University of Sheffield's £4.4m Environmental Research Centre
Planning permission has been granted for a £4.4 million facility in which researchers from the University of Sheffield will study the behaviour of plants and social insects, such as ants and bees.
The building, designed by Bond Bryan Architects, will include several ‘bee holes’ built into the exterior walls to allow bees to fly into and out of the facility from nearby hives.
The single-storey research facility will be built in woodland off Northumberland Road and will cover 630 square metres. The adjoining greenhouse, which will be an integral part of the University’s Department of Animal and Plant Sciences will cover a further 650 square metres.
Project Architect Matt Hutton says: “This building is sympathetically designed to enrich its immediate surroundings, including sustainability features, such as a green roof.”
“The building, which will sit within a derelict site already owned by the University, will incorporate a great many natural materials into the design. We are working with the University and Local Authority to establish a woodland management scheme which will re-establish native species to the site.
“A bee flight room is integrated within the building, with holes in the wall linked directly to the bee flight paths, so their behaviour can be observed as they come in and out of the building. It is the first time we have been asked to include such a feature in a building. Usually we are required to keep bees and ants out of our buildings, not in.
“These rooms have been designed to stay at a constant temperature as many of the ants and other insects will be imported from hot climates.”
Construction of the building commences in June 2007 and work is expected to be completed in summer 2008.