Beecroft Building, University of Oxford

Key facts

Beecroft Building, University of Oxford

PBA has provided multidisciplinary services to deliver a world-class research centre in one of the largest Physics Departments in the world. 

The new Clarendon Physics Laboratory occupies a prominent site opposite the Grade 1 Keeble College chapel in the Science area of Oxford. The five storeys above ground provide office, teaching and collaboration space aimed at Theoretical Physics, with three basement levels dedicated to research labs for Experimental Physics. The basement labs require a very high degree of vibration isolation, requiring isolation pads between columns and foundations, floating floors to labs, keel slabs and air tables to provide the highest possible level of isolation. 

The keel slabs are supported off the lowest level basement which is a sterile space reserved only for this purpose and serves no other function. Modelling of the construction sequence of the building showed that foundation movements of the adjacent building would be excessive. PBA developed a strategy to minimise this movement which includes grout injection under the adjacent building, stabilising the soil and reducing movement to acceptable magnitude.