Lancaster University

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InfoLab wins major national design award

11/02/2005 09:27:31

InfoLab21 reception

InfoLab21, the landmark building based at Lancaster University, has won a major design prize.

Announced on Tuesday night (4th October) at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London to 1,500 industry representatives, InfoLab21 won the national British Council for Offices best corporate work place prize, beating off competition from the BBC amongst others.

This is the first time that a university building has won the award.

InfoLab21,Lancaster University’s centre for excellence in ICT (Information Communications and Technology) was designed by FaulknerBrowns, Architects, and built by HBG Construction Ltd. The copper-clad building includes state-of-the-art computer facilities, offices, teaching space, a glass atrium and café with roof terrace and sedum garden.

The judges commented: “This research centre makes a bold and unusual statement. But that was exactly the brief: a beacon to attract top class ICT firms to come and partner University staff in a showpiece for the region, as well as for the University campus.

“The University has shown considerable enterprise by commissioning a significant and high quality building .Opportunities presented by the spectacular site have been grasped in a positive and confident way, creating a landmark building for those travelling North on the M6 motorway.”

Mark Swindlehurst, Director of Estates, added that he was "delighted with the award that recognised the great quality of a building that without doubt puts Lancaster University on top of the map."

A key aim of the Centre is to promote and accelerate technology transfer between the ICT research in the University and the local and regional industry, especially small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).

InfoLab21 co-locates more than 250 ICT experts in the academic wing with around 20 specialised ICT SMEs in the Knowledge Business Centre, as well as an ICT- focussed training unit for the benefit of the local and regional industry. The new building forms the physical hub of a virtual network of more than a hundred companies in the region.