The Eden Project: The Foundation Building   Cornwall, UK

The Foundation Building forms the third phase of The Eden Project, and was designed to accommodate the increased staffing levels of Eden Project employees. It offers a comfortable working environment for the administrative team as well as library facilities.

It is the practice's first building built to have an entirely PVC-free specification and uses its own environmental management system. The concept is to provide a highly insulated, lightweight timber box wrapped inside a breathable metal skin, with both skin and box punctured by a vertical light shaft.

Laid out over two floors, it follows a 6 x 14 m primary grid. Each floor is arranged around a central staircase and is largely open plan. There are timber-decked external terraces at ground and first-floor level and a projecting curved balcony extends beyond the building envelope.

The structure comprises a series of ten propped softwood glulam beams. Instead of the traditional flat floor slab, the building is raised off the ground, supported on slender, timber columns bolted to concrete pads.

The roof is clad using an aluminium standing-seam system, and curves downwards to the east, forming a canopy supporting the horizontal louvres. Within the building, additional training rooms and a seminar area allow the space to be flexible dependent on the functions taking place in the building at any moment.

Location
Cornwall, UK

Project Types
Workplace →
Culture and Exhibition Halls →

Client
Eden Project Limited

Area
1,800 sq m

Status
Complete

Year
2002