Couch Perry Wilkes university project recognised in AJ’s Retrofit Awards

A technically-advanced university refurbishment project for which environmental engineering consultancy Couch Perry Wilkes provided mechanical, electrical and sustainability expertise has won a prestigious architects’ award.

The £2 million Riverside Centre at the University of Worcester was crowned the winner of the Architects’ Journal’s 2012 Retrofit Award for Higher Education Buildings.

The Riverside Centre was recognised for the innovative conversion of the former car dealership and garage into a sports and performing arts teaching facility.

Working with KKE Architects, Couch Perry Wilkes provided mechanical, electrical and sustainability advice, and design services for the building.

Using the latest environmental techniques, Couch Perry Wilkes designed environmental controls that use a natural ventilation strategy, including a low level building management system and controlled glazing to maximise night time cooling and reduce heat gains and heat losses from the building.

Wayne Eustace, Director at Couch Perry Wilkes’ Head Office in Birmingham, said: “The Architects’ Journal Retrofit Awards were highly contested this year with some incredible projects shortlisted in the Higher Education Buildings category, so we are extremely pleased that the work at the Riverside Centre has been recognised.”

“It was a project that saw us working very closely with KKE Architects so that we could provide an innovative and technically-advanced design to meet the needs of the university.”

Phil Kavanagh, Director, KKE Architects, added: “KKE Architects are honoured and excited that the Riverside Centre won this year’s Higher Education Buildings Retrofit Award.

“We chose to enter these prestigious awards because they celebrate and reward excellent design, engineering and construction that embraces sustainable credentials and encourages prolonging the active life of existing buildings and infrastructure.  These ideals reflect the ethos of our company.”

Now in its third year, the awards champion the best creative re-use of buildings and construction. The winners were announced at an awards dinner at The Brewery, London, on September 12.

Couch Perry Wilkes is an award winning environmental building services consultancy that uses innovative and modern engineering techniques to provide exemplar low and zero carbon design solutions.  Specialising in building form, orientation, mass, and façade engineering, Couch Perry Wilkes works closely with architects and clients at the conceptual stages of a building in order to maximise the passive benefits of a scheme.