Systems Medicine Building

Linking experts to support state-of-the-art research

Understanding how systems in the body work and interact is a complex science, which can help streamline medical treatment while minimising its side effects.

BAM built the new Systems Medicine Building for the Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine (IGMM) at the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh which supports this important aspect of research.

Project details

  • Customer: University of Edinburgh
  • Main contractor: BAM Construction
  • Architect: Oberlanders Architects LLP
  • Quantity surveyor: Sweett
  • Structural engineer: Goodson Associates
  • Services engineer: KJ Tait
  • Value: £8.5 million
  • Completion: October 2014

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Making the connection

Space at the hospital site was at a premium. So the new building was designed to make the most of a void, linking three existing buildings: physically and metaphorically.

Its  steel frame spans the space between the Medical Research Council, University and Cancer Research laboratory buildings forming a new world class research institute.

Connecting all three existing buildings, it now provides a central atrium as well as a new iconic frontage that has changed the face of the east side of the hospital site.

Exchanging ideas, working together

Inside, the open, organic design encourages interaction and collaboration between researchers. A central atrium is naturally lit via a roof cupola.

The new building provides a seminar room and office spaces, research spaces for computational biology and new social spaces.

BAM has refurbished and provided new facilities for the Institute, such as a bio store.

Natural principles

As befitting a leading-edge research facility, there’s a deliberate emphasis on green issues and sustainability. The project has achieved a BREEAM ‘Very Good rating.

For example, ultra high-performance insulation and heat recovery units, means there is no need for primary heating.

And at a detailed level, the landscape planting follows the principles of a ‘Physic Garden’ using indigenous species.