Construction has begun on the new £20million GlaxoSmithKline Carbon Neutral Laboratory for Sustainable Chemistry at The University of Nottingham.

To mark the start of construction on the latest landmark development on the University’s Jubilee Campus, a traditional turf cutting ceremony was held on site with the University’s construction partner Morgan Sindall.

Located on the award-winning Innovation Park, the new carbon neutral laboratory building will provide unrivalled facilities for chemistry. The focus on sustainability will be reflected in the build-ing itself, which will incorporate the latest technologies to allow it to be carbon neutral over its lifetime.

The building is set to achieve a BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assess-ment Method) rating of ‘Outstanding’ and LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) ‘Platinum’ rating. It is set to reach carbon neutral status after 25 years.

The laboratory will be built from natural materials and energy required to run it will be met by renewable sources such as solar power and sustainable biomass. Excess energy created by the building will provide enough carbon credits over 25 years to pay back the carbon used in its con-struction.

The University of Nottingham’s Chief Estates and Facilities Officer, Chris Jagger, said: “We are very excited about the start of construction on the GSK Carbon Neutral Laboratory for Sustainable Chemistry. The building is part of our on-going strategic capital development plans and invest-ments to continuously improving the teaching and research facilities across all of our campuses. This unique building is also a reflection of our commitment to sustainability and will set new stan-dards for the development of ‘green’ laboratories in the future.”

Morgan Sindall Area Director, Richard Fielding, said: “The laboratory is a UK first and is set to push the boundaries of sustainable construction and we’re proud to have been appointed to con-struct this outstanding facility.

“Morgan Sindall has a great depth of experience constructing speciality laboratory facilities and is well versed in delivering highly sustainable developments, so we’re looking forward to working closely with the University and our project partners to bring that expertise and knowledge to bear on this scheme.”

The building, which has been designed by architects, The Fairhursts Design Group, will occupy 4,500 sq m over two floors. In addition to laboratory space for around 100 researchers, it will also contain dedicated instrument rooms, a teaching laboratory for advanced undergraduate classes, and space for a range of outreach activities.

The laboratory is being constructed in partnership with the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and Impact: The Nottingham Campaign, the University’s largest ever fundraising appeal to change lives, tackle global issues and shape the future. The Campaign facilitated a £12 million grant from GSK as part of their ‘green chemistry’ commitment first announced in 2010.

Work on the development is expected to be completed in early 2015. The project is being man-aged by Gleeds and the project team includes quantity surveyors Northcroft Services, CDM coor-dinator WSP Safety and structural engineers Aecom.