Students Staff

10 September 2013

Your chance to visit the "super-sustainable" building project at Essex

Members of the public are being offered an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the site of the £21 million building which will house Essex Business School, currently being built by construction and infrastructure company Morgan Sindall.

On Friday 27 September and Saturday 28 September, the Morgan Sindall team will be opening up the site of the highly-sustainable building and will offer visitors the chance to take part in a series of talks and tours of the site.

The event is part of Open Doors Weekend, the nationwide event that offers supervised site visits at a series of participating construction sites across the country.

During the visits, parties of up to eight people will have the chance to get an expert insight into the techniques used to design and construct this landmark sustainable centre during a series of talks by the project team. Visitors will also have the chance to pick the brains of the team which includes specialists in design, planning, finance and sustainable construction.

People visiting on Saturday will have the chance to tour the site, while visitors on Friday will be able to get a good look at the site from the viewing platform which overlooks the project, during the hour-long sessions.

Morgan Sindall project manager, Derek Foster, said: “We’re delighted to be taking part in the Open Doors Weekend initiative this year. This is a very exciting, super-sustainable project, which has a lot of interesting elements and will give people a great insight into the direction in which sustainable construction and design is moving.

“We’re looking forward to welcoming visitors onto the site and giving them a look at all the activity which goes on behind the project hoardings. This would be a great activity for people interested in sustainable construction, together with families of students who were thinking about beginning a career in the construction industry.”

The highly-sustainable building has been designed by architects BDP to be carbon neutral and will showcase renewable technologies in action. The aim is to achieve a Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) rating of Excellent and the building will feature a range of innovative sustainable elements including a ‘green’ sedum roof, solar panels, and sustainably sourced materials.

The attractive curved timber framed and timber clad building is shaped so that it benefits from natural day lighting and ventilation. The building will also feature an EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer) biome panelled roof similar to that used in the Eden Project, which is made from a fluorine-based plastic, which is resilient, self-cleaning and recyclable.

The Morgan Sindall team is also constructing a winter garden at the heart of the development which will act as an environmental buffer zone, supporting the passive ventilation and heating strategy of the three-storey building while also providing an attractive central gathering space.

The project is due to be completed in early Summer 2014 and will include a 200-seat lecture theatre, a number of smaller seminar rooms, learning and teaching areas, common rooms and social spaces for students.

The project team will be hosting a series of five visits (for groups of up to eight people) on the Friday running between 9am and 4pm and three visits running between 9am and 1pm on the Saturday.

For more information, or to book, visit

For additional information or queries from schools or colleges, please call project manager, Derek Foster, on 07968 264015 – this number is not for general booking enquiries.

Further information:

For more information about this news release please contact Ruth Cobban at Paver Smith on 0151 239 5000 or email

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