BAM win £23M contract from The University of Liverpool

The University of Liverpool has selected BAM Construction as its preferred contractor for the £23 million build contract for the new Materials Innovation Factory (MIF) at the heart of the university campus.

The project includes the demolition of an existing lecture theatre and the construction of the four storey 11,600 sq m BREEAM Excellent rated facility that will incorporate research laboratories, 126 bespoke fume cupboards, office accommodation and associated ancillary spaces. Work is scheduled to start on site in November 2014 with practical completion of this 90 week build in July 2016.

When completed MIF will be occupied by 240 researchers, including 140 university staff, a team of Unilever scientists from their global Research and Development (R&D) Centre for Home Care and Personal Care products in Port Sunlight, and a broad range of other industrial and academic partners. Supported by the Higher Education Funding Council for England, as part of the UK Government’s Research Partnership Investment Fund, the MIF is a unique public/private partnership between the University and Unilever.

Anthony Mulhearn, project manager at The University of Liverpool said: “We are delighted to be moving the MIF project to the next stage with the appointment of BAM Construction to build this world-class facility and one which we are very proud to bring to Liverpool. This contemporary building clearly reflects our aspirations and provides the ideal environment to further our relationships with industry partners”.

Ged Flanagan, construction director, BAM Construction said: “This is an exciting project with a high technical specification and we are looking forward to starting on site and working with the project team to deliver this leading research facility for the University of Liverpool.”

The University of Liverpool’s team includes The Fairhursts Design Group (architect) Curtins (civil & structural engineer) White Young Green (building services engineer) and Turner & Townsend (cost consultant).

The concept behind the MIF design by the architects, The Fairhursts Design Group, is to reflect the creative processes involved in discovery and innovation. Externally the building is encased by raw, imperfect, natural materials such as ‘Corten Steel’ and exposed concrete with two glass office blocks abutting the steel laboratories. Internally, the building features flexible laboratories with interlinked workspaces and a central atrium that allows light to flood into the central offices, creating a focal point for interaction as well as social space.

Richard Sagar, managing director of the Fairhursts Design Group, said: “The brief for the MIF has provided us with the opportunity to produce an exciting bespoke laboratory design for one of the region’s leading universities and its industrial collaborators. We are looking forward to working with BAM and the wider construction team to bring the MIF vision to fruition”.

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