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PSP were appointed by Queen’s College to provide full quantity surveying services on the exciting and complex project to provide a new subterranean library and archive set beneath the Provost’s Garden. The New Library was linked to the existing 14th & 19th Century library at basement level and provides valuable reading and storage space as well as a specialist temperature and humidity controlled archive. The new facility fits seamlessly into the confined, historic setting.
The New Library provides the College with an additional 650m² of library storage and study space, including a new Historic Collections and Archive Store (HCAS) which houses the College’s antiquarian collection in optimum conditions (18°C, 50% relative humidity). The scheme provides 30 reader spaces with additional provision for a dedicated Historic Collections reading room for 6 readers and a multi-purpose room for 6 readers. With minimum visual impact to the Provost’s Garden a rooflight runs from north to south illuminating the reading room and the staff offices and giving spectacular views of the historic west façade of the existing library – a view previously only glimpsed over garden walls.
The new library is a reinforced concrete box structure, with a contiguous piled perimeter and a green roof. Due to the confined nature of the site, spoil was removed as it was excavated via very narrow, historic access roads adjacent to the site. The construction phase required underpinning of surrounding existing listed buildings and historic walls and constant structural movement monitoring was undertaken.
Further characteristics include:
- De-watering installation
- Waterproofing; waterproof concrete, with Grace Preprufe linings
- Historic books controlled environment & security systems
- Bespoke joinery book shelving, study desks, lockers and wall panelling
- Structural walk-on roof lights
- Reinstatement of existing garden and historic stone terrace
The project was procured traditionally under a JCT Standard Building Contract 2011 with contractor’s design elements. Bills of quantities were used to maximise the competitive process and provide clear and detailed cost for the management of change post contract. Beard Construction were appointed following a competitive tender process.