Dame Elizabeth Esteve-Coll Centre 03

Help Desk

Dame Elizabeth Esteve-Coll Centre 02

Atrium under construction

Dame Elizabeth Esteve-Coll Centre 01




The relocation of the LRC from the first floor to the ground floor aimed to create a brand new interdisciplinary learning zone at the heart of the campus. This has been designed to create a hub for students services, with a natural flow between the various services on offer.

There are 64 group study, 10 silent study and 36 quiet study spaces.

The building is 1930s and is located on the banks of a small river, The Hogsmill, cretaing a very rural and peaceful atmosphere despite its proximity to Kingston town centre.

The project was ambitious as it took a quadrangle with an open air centre and glassed over it, creating a brand new atrium space, light, airy, and visually dramatic. The original 1930s brickwork has been cleaned up and left exposed instead of plastered and painted, which has created the feeling of bringing the outside in, as well as creating continuity between the old and the new.

The building now has the capacity to operate intelligently, for example when the external conditions are right the windows will open automatically to keep the LRC cool and reduce the need for mechanical cooling. The building can also cool itself at night in the same way which further reduces the need for mechanical cooling during the day. When additional cooling is needed, highly efficient chilled beams are used which minimise associated CO2 emissions.

The original areas of the building have been insulated to the same standards as would be required for a new building thus reducing the building's heating needs.

The glazing for the atrium roof has a high performance solar coating and graduated frit pattern to maximise daylight and minimise heat gain.

All lighting in the new building includes occupancy and daylight sensors which means it is only on when needed.

Ecofon panels have been used to reduce noise throughout. Slatted wood cladding with a noise absorbtion material padding between the wooden slats will reduce noise in the atrium.

RFID gates are used at the entrance with gunnebo barriers and Intellident security tags in the stock.

The building management system regulates the heating and cooling system, opening and closing windows automatically according to temperature.

The development was designed to achieve a Good BREEAM rating incorporating measures to improve the overall energy performance of the Quadrangle Building and supplying 20% of the building's energy needs through clean renewable sources.

A plasma screen in the LRC displays data from the building management system reporting back performance levels.

Rainwater storage.

The existing quadrangle roof and the new atrium roof have been arranged with rainwater collection in mind. This rainwater is stored in underground tanks and is used to flush the toilets within the building.

Photovoltaics have been installed on the roof of the quadrangle building to absorb sunlight and convert the solar energy into direct electricity to be used within the building. They provide an eco-friendly source of electricity that is renewable and non-polluting. Any electricity generated from the photovoltaics that is surplus to the University's requirements could be sent to the National Grid to be used elsewhere.

Hot water is produced for the building from a roof mounted solar thermal array.



The Building

The Building

Type of library

Campus/site library


951 m2




Pascall & Watson

Building contractor

Walter Lilley

The Space

The Space

Features and services

Special services

Group study spaces, Hosting of other agencies, Specialist subject collections

External features

Nature of site, Shared building, Building shape, Materials, Materials

Internal features

Design features, Structural

Energy efficiency

Control mechanisms, Energy conservation, General, Heating, Lighting, Ventilation, Water use

Accessibility provision

Access to building, Assistive technology, Furniture height

Interior designer


Furniture suppliers

Senator, Wagstaff

Services and facilities suppliers

Ex Libris, Toshiba, Intellident, Gunnebo UK

IT provision

General, Laptop points, RFID, Self service circulation, WiFi, Number of public computer terminals: 40

Seats/study places