CAR were structural engineers for the award-winning EF Language School in Cambridge. The building, designed by NRAP Architects, has recently won two RIBA East of England awards: an RIBA Regional Award and a Conservation Award sponsored by Historic England.
The language school’s large Edwardian villa on the Hills Road site was unsuitable for its use. NRAP‘s scheme for the major refurbishment of the villa and an extension opens up spacious rooms for teaching, dining and social exchange within the original villa. In the extension 13 new daylit classrooms surround a generous foyer with its slender steel frame, glass partitions, and a black zinc roof articulating the rhythm of the spaces. Rooms are predominantly naturally ventilated and an extensive array of solar panels provides on-site energy generation.
The RIBA Journal states: ”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.”
NRAP Architects also received the Cambridge Design and Construction Award in the category of Conservation, Alteration or Extension of an Existing Building for the EF Language School in recognition of their contribution to the buildings and townscape of the City of Cambridge.