New London Architecture

Marshgate, UCL East

Under Construction

The state of the art research and academic building brings together cross-disciplinary expertise; the centre for the UCL East academic vision, uniting Experiments, Arts, Society, and Technology (EAST)

Marshgate, the 35,000sqm state of the art research and academic building will bring together cross-disciplinary expertise. The centre for the UCL East academic vision, it will unite Experiments, Arts, Society, and Technology (EAST) across taught programmes, research, and innovation. Currently on site, the project is designed around a series of passive design strategies including the use of thermal mass, natural ventilation, fabric first approach, maximising natural daylight through an optimised façade design, together with efficient active measures and renewable technologies.

"This project presented a unique opportunity to create a distinctive place: a new kind of university quarter that captures the excitement and vitality that draws people to live, work and study in contemporary London. Drawing on the energy of its East London setting, the Lee Valley's legacy of industriousness and creativity, and the exceptional cultural and landscape setting of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, this will be a place for curiosity, learning and collaboration engaged with the culture of the surrounding city."
Gavin Henderson, Principal Director, Stanton Williams

Zero Carbon London

Zero Carbon London

→ Minimum BREEAM Excellent
→ 40% reduction in regulated CO2 emissions compared to the Part L Building Regulations
→ 1200 sqm array of PV cells
→ Passive design

UCL East is the largest single expansion of University College London (UCL) since it was founded in Bloomsbury nearly 200 years ago. Marshgate, the 35,000 sqm state of art academic research and academic building, currently on site, will bring together cross-disciplinary UCL expertise. The centre of the UCL East academic vision, it will unite Experiments, Arts, Society, and Technology (EAST) across taught programmes, research, and innovation, in such areas as creativity and material culture, future global cities and experimental engineering.

The first building within the UCL East masterplan, the project will serve as a model for the sustainable university campus of the future — open, dynamic and overcoming the conventional barriers between research, education, innovation, public engagement and collaboration. Opening onto the riverside, the scheme will provide an animated public realm, and will engage with the Olympic Park and the surrounding community.

Due for completion in 2022, the building includes a range of laboratories, research and group working spaces, design studios, student-led fabrication workshops, and exhibition areas. The design is focused around collaborative social areas, promoting interdisciplinary work and interaction between teaching and research, staff and students, academics and the public.

The project embraces circular economy principles and is designed around a series of passive design strategies including the use of thermal mass for summer night cooling, natural ventilation, fabric first approach and maximising use of natural daylight and reducing heat gain through an optimised façade design. Key sustainable features also include biodiverse roofs, renewable technologies, rainwater harvesting and underground cycle storage.

Active systems such as highly efficient mechanical ventilation, heating and cooling systems and low energy LED lighting reduce the overall energy requirements. The development is served by the local district heating network.

From inception, the project adopted a long life — loose fit strategy including a fabric first approach with optimised facades to mitigate thermal gain, whilst maximising daylighting and views out. Well ventilated workspaces feature automated openable windows, enhancing user wellbeing, whilst allowing the heat accumulated in the concrete floor slabs during the day to be released at night, minimising the need for cooling.

Project information


Under Construction




35000 sq m




Sidings St, London E15 2LE, UK

Team Credits


University College London (UCL)


Stanton Williams


Sustainability, MEP, BIM, Lighting, Acoustics , Fire, Infrastructure, Logistics, Transport, Security: Arup


Structural design: AKT2



Landscape Architect

Vogt Landscape


Design Manager: Plan A


PD Advisor: Bureau Veritas


Project Manager: WSP / Turner and Townsend


Accessibility: All Clear Designs Limited & Arup


Access and Maintenance: REEF Associates Ltd

Cost Consultant



Catering: Tricon

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