UEA’s innovative Enterprise Centre wins its 20th award

The UEA Enterprise Centre. Pic: Darren Carter.

The UEA Enterprise Centre. Pic: Darren Carter. - Credit: Archant

An innovative building at the University of East Anglia has been presented with its 20th award less than two years after opening its doors.

The Enterprise Centre was one of 45 projects to win a national Civic Trust Award, which recognises the building's aesthetics, sustainability, inclusive design and the positive contribution it makes to the community it serves.

The centre was praised for being 'an exceptional building from its conception to its overall and detailed design that makes a major contribution to the UEA campus while adding to its history of ground-breaking buildings'.

The Civic Trust added: 'The building wears its low-carbon credentials confidently but in a relaxed way that delights from its subdued displays of natural materials such as hemp, reed-board and nettle fabric to its highly innovative use of sprayed paper sound-absorbent linings.'

Since its opening in 2015 the Enterprise Centre has become one of the region's most successful green business centres, acting as a hub for entrepreneurs and established businesses with a low-carbon focus.

Prof John French, chief executive of the Adapt Group, which runs the Enterprise Centre, said: 'We are delighted to see this recognition for outstanding architecture and design at UEA.

'This building had a very demanding environmental specification, targeting both BREEAM Outstanding and Passivhaus certification as well as local materials and bio-renewables, and it is now recognised as one of the lowest-energy buildings ever created.

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'The award is also a tribute to the excellent work of our architects Architype and BDP and our main contractor, Morgan Sindall, who rose to the challenge and worked very collaboratively to deliver this outstanding building.'

The Enterprise Centre's other accolades include a Guardian Sustainable Business Award and 'Best of the Best' from the British Council for Offices.

Funded by the UEA, Norwich Research Park, European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), Building Research Establishment (BRE) and New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), it is currently at nearly 100% occupancy, housing around 70 professionals from 40 different businesses.