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Combined Colleges Boathouse

Facility upgrades to stay above water

  • Cambridge, United Kingdom

    Cambridge, United Kingdom

Regular flood risks require careful design consideration

The combined colleges of Selwyn, King’s, and Churchill—together with The Leys School—needed to upgrade their boat club facilities. The proposed development strategy would provide much needed upgraded accommodation for the clubs, locating the majority of the accommodation (other than boat storage) on the upper floor, out of the flood plain. It also presented an opportunity to positively contribute to—and enhance—the character of this conservation area.

We supported the project from the planning stage by providing flood risk assessment services to get Environment Agency approval for the development in this sensitive river-bank location. Our civil and structural engineering designs were greatly influenced by the regularity of flooding and the requirement to not lose any flood storage volume.

The result? A fresh contemporary boathouse fronting the River Cam and incorporating a large fitness room and individual club rooms for each College. This design has replaced a tired 1960s concrete portal frame building. The design responds to the risk of regular flooding and offers improved facilities for students and community.

At a Glance

R H Partnership Architects
RIBA East Award, 2017

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