Natural History Museum appoints HBG for major construction project

HBG has been appointed for the construction of phase two of the Darwin Centre at the Natural History Museum in London. The construction period of this £41 million contract starts in June 2006 for completion in July 2008. It will house the museum’s collections of historically unique and scientifically irreplaceable insects and plants. It will include state-of-the-art laboratories and provide visitors with a fascinating insight into the museum’s research. It is due to open to the public late in 2009. This project has been designed by Danish firm C. F. Møller Architects. The key feature of the 8-storey building will be a sprayed-concrete ‘cocoon’ structure, which will be the largest structure of its type in the UK. It will provide a constant temperature of 17°C and RH of 45% to protect 28 million insect and three million plant specimens from damage by fire, insect pests and fluctuating conditions. The Building Research Establishment’s Environmental Assessment Method has been used to ensure the building reaches a high standard of sustainability. Project manager is Heery International. Over £60 million has been pledged to building Darwin Centre Phase Two. A fund-raising campaign is under way to reach the final target. Major supporters include the Heritage Lottery Fund; The Wellcome Trust; Department for Culture, Media & Sport; The Garfield Weston Foundation; The Cadogan Charity; Prof. Anthony and Mrs Angela Marmont; and GlaxoSmithKline.
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