- Location Oxford, UK
- Status Built
- Service Architecture
- Sectors Education, Science and research
- Area 7,400m²/79,600ft²
- Client The University of Oxford
The Big Data Institute at the University of Oxford is a medical research building dedicated to complex analytical research into the causes, consequences, prevention and treatment of disease. This includes projects like the Recovery trial to find an effective COVID-19 treatment and the UK Biobank programme. The BDI is Make’s fifth building for the university, and together with the NDM Building next door, also by Make, it completes the Li Ka Shing Centre for Health Information and Discovery.
Designed to encourage collaboration and openness, four levels of office space are arranged around a timber atrium, each with a mix of perimeter offices and open-plan spaces interspersed with breakout areas. The lower ground houses two seminar rooms that receive natural light from clerestory windows, and a servery with a lightwell and a rooflight that provides views of the new public realm outside.
Drawing on the horizontal cladding of the NDM Building, the facade is a veil of horizontal grey polyester powder-coated aluminium bands and glazing, with more open arrangement along the north elevation and more solid on the south and west.
The BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ building employs extensive passive design and is the first UK research building – and only one of a handful of UK buildings in total – to utilise an underground concrete labyrinth as part of a cooling and heating strategy.
[This] will pioneer new advances in the analysis of medical data which can help scientists to better understand human disease and its treatment.
In a Make first, we’ve pioneered a rare design in which the building sits atop a 600m underground concrete labyrinth. The air running through it is drawn from outside and will either be cooled or warmed by the concrete – which is a relatively constant 12oC – to regulate temperatures in both winter and summer.