The Fetal Medicine Research Institute is a 5,255m² NHS centre of excellence for Fetal Medicine serving more than 10,000 patients each year and offering world-class research and teaching facilities in the field of fetal medicine.
This was a real structural design and build challenge for a new 5 storey RC frame to one side of a glass roofed atrium and a steel frame within a derelict Georgian terrace on the other.
The building is a ‘tour de force’ of structural engineering: not a single column sits on top of another floor to floor and the main core is punched with triangular formed windows.
Pre-stressed beams sit over a 100+ seater lecture theatre in the two-storey basement and the 5m cantilevered floors are punched with a scenic lift. A 14m propped cantilever bespoke steel roof arches to precast concrete feature arches that are supported off steel tubes through the frameless glass, and bridges have been built off the cantilever at both ends of the atrium linking the new build to the existing terrace.
The project was built in very difficult ground conditions as the site sits on London clay over artesian Thanet sands with a variable but high water table. The basement designs displaced the high water table and created an uplift similar to the self-weight of the RC frame.