As part of the Government’s Jobcentre Plus programme, a new Jobcentre complex was commissioned in Bournemouth. The building merged two existing offices into one modern, three-storey building extending to 28,450 sq. ft.
Thomasons was appointed to design the structure of the building, with the brief that the building should achieve the highest BREEAM rating of Excellent and also be architecturally pleasing. Owing to the prior usage of the site, significant investigations were needed to ensure that contamination levels did not exceed those set out in government guidelines.
Flexibility was key to the project’s success; the design needed to accommodate changes to the environmental equipment within the building as well as the needs of future tenants. Soft areas were also required, so that new staircases and lifts could be added at a later date.
It was a requirement to air condition the building, with the flexibility to revert to a natural air circulation system at a later date. Thomasons achieved this by incorporating exposed concrete into the design to which would cool the internal environment naturally.
The curved building responds to the unusually-shaped site. It has flat floor plates to allow maximum flexibility for the building services systems and to accommodate future office layouts.
Surface water from the site discharges into two wide diameter pre-cast soakaways up to 5 metres deep. Green roofs minimise the volume of rainwater that runs off into the soakaway system and have the added benefit of attracting wildlife. All surface water was retained on site and used for irrigation or disposed of via soakaways.