Careful melding of the new building into its historic environment
EF Language School, Cambridge
NRAP Architects for EF Education First
Contract value: £3.35m
NRAP Architects was charged with refurbishing and extending the client’s turn of the century villa, to create 13 fully accessible, state of the art teaching spaces and improved common room and IT facilities, all connected via a dramatic new top-lit circulation space.
The judges felt this to be a carefully considered scheme that respected the existing structure while inserting a completely modern piece of architecture well suited to its pedagogical purpose. The level of invention, innovation and originality was marked and especially evident in the internal and external detailing of old materials with new ones.
Accessibility requirements were well resolved and well integrated in this busy school environment. Acoustics were well managed and worked excellently, even in the larger circulation spaces. The careful melding of the new building into its historic environment led to a highly successful project in conservation terms, resulting in the school receiving the region’s Conservation Award.