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Construction award for £13.5m teaching centre

16 June 2015

postgraduate teaching centre outside photo of sign

The new £13.5m postgraduate centre at Cardiff Business School has picked up a major award at an event which celebrates the best of construction in Wales

The teaching centre, which hosts both professionals receiving training and full-time students studying for Masters-level qualifications, won the Health and Safety Award at the Constructing Excellence in Wales awards 2015.

The building, which beat Cardiff Royal Infirmary and a recycling centre to the prize, will now be entered into the national Constructing Excellence awards in October.

Organisers said: "This year more than ever it is true to say that all of the organisations, companies and individuals involved in our awards are all winners and each and every one should be applauded for their commitment to the core values of Welsh construction.

"The standard of all the entrants in 2015 reinforce that belief and those values and yet again the judges had a very tough time of it as every entry possessed stand out qualities.

"Each entry showed that when it is done right, every £1 we spend in construction doubles in value and will provide enormous benefits for local communities and the country as a whole if we design procure and build right."

The project achieved outstanding health and safety of both the workforce and the general public, ranging from the creation of a health and safety app to public health screening sessions with local cancer charity Tenovus.

This was despite several health and safety challenges including an adjacent railway line, the confined space and teaching facilities either side of the site.

These issues were overcome through a combination of sensitive planning and execution of the project, and regular dialogue with those involved.

Measures were taken to ensure the safety of pedestrians such as a gateman, secure site access and the introduction of safe pedestrian routes.

Health and safety information and updates for students and staff were played on a screen in the business school's existing building.

Even the design had health and safety in mind, with the aim being to keep maintenance to a minimum.

The centre features two major lecture theatres, a trading room allowing students to gain the skills required for life at the Stock Exchange, teaching and seminar rooms and a range of informal learning and teaching spaces.

The centre was also recently shortlisted in the Design Through Innovation category at the annual RICS 2015 awards but lost out to the University's Hadyn Ellis Building.

The project was managed by the University's Estates team with partners including principal contractors ISG, architects Boyes Rees, civil and structural engineers Bingham Hall and quantity surveyors Hills.