As well as teaching facilities for students, office accommodation and social spaces, the Gateway building houses highly-serviced laboratories and plant research rooms.
The building has been built using straw from the University’s own farm and, at 3,100m2, is the largest straw-walled building in Europe. This traditional material is inherently ‘green’ with excellent thermal and airtightness properties that can dramatically reduce the heating and cooling demands of building occupants.
Initially, comfort cooling was requested for all occupied spaces. We carried out extensive sample modelling at concept stages and presented the results openly to the user groups expressing concern, agreeing to an ‘on demand’ system of mechanical ventilation.