Cambridge City Council has granted planning permission for The Forum, a £120m mixed-use medical and education facility on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus.
The Forum is being developed by John Laing and Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (CUHT), as part of the joint venture project Forum Cambridge.
The Forum will contain a post-graduate medical education centre, 900-delegate conference centre, a 90-bed Ramsay Health Care UK private hospital and a four-star Crowne Plaza hotel.
The project’s has been designed by architects NBBJ, in association with the contractor Laing O’Rourke using their Design for Manufacture and Assembly system, and construction will see its entire structure, mechanical and electrical systems being fabricated in a factory and assembled on site.
NBBJ principal Jane McElroy said that The Forum will provide a central focal point for medical innovation and a place where people come together to talk, share, inspire and learn.
"This scheme will act as a catalyst encouraging additional investment for the Cambridge Biomedical Campus. With scale, proportions and materiality all based on Cambridge’s historic architecture, it fits sensitively within the context of the city, where traditional craftsmanship meets modern construction," McElroy said.
Additionally, the lower public areas of The Forum appear to be open, while the private upper areas are more restrained, claims the company.
The building’s stone aggregate facade resembles the local Cambridge stone and contrasts with glass and steel neighbouring buildings.
Cambridge University Hospital CEO Keith McNeil said that gaining planning permission is a key step to bringing better treatments to patients.
"It will provide a fantastic opportunity for research professionals and clinicians from Cambridge and around the globe to work closely together on new research and practices in healthcare. The addition of a new post-graduate education centre, hotel and conference centre and other facilities will further cement our reputation as one of the world’s leading medical cities," McNeil said.
John Laing healthcare projects director and Forum Cambridge partner Peter Ward said they are pleased that the scheme has received approval, and very grateful for all the support they have received from Trust staff, the council and members of the public.
"By co-locating, co-operating and sharing resources and expertise at The Forum, leading clinicians and academics will be able to work together efficiently and bring significant economic, social and reputational benefits to Cambridge," Ward said.
Image: Artist’s impression of the upcoming £120m Cambridge Forum. Photo: courtesy of NBBJ.