Innovation Birmingham Campus, Birmingham

Client

Thomas Vale Construction

Architect

AHR Architects

Value

£8m

“Finalist for Best Large Commercial Project at the 2017 LABC Awards”. 

Project
The scheme consists of a new building within the Birmingham Science Park with a capability for more than 550 people. There will be rentable office space for computer based businesses, an auditorium for related functions and a cafe. Seemingly cube shaped from the outside, the building opens within a large void area which provides natural light to the entire building.

Challenges
The main fire safety issue was the large void through the centre of the building, as there is the potential for smoke spread to other levels from the fire floor. In addition, most of the escape routes from the storeys are adjacent to the void, potentially creating issues with the means of escape.

Solutions
Our Fire Engineers ensured design flexibility by using CFD modelling to demonstrate the safety of the design. The CFD results showed that the proposed smoke control system would adequately protect the means of escape at the mezzanine, first and second floor levels. In addition, the CFD model supported our detailed egress calculations to demonstrate that the flow through the corridors was acceptable and the building could be evacuated safely.

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