Summer holidays. What are they? | Imperial News

Summer holidays. What are they? |  Imperial News
Summer holidays. What are they? |  Imperial News

Summer for the Property Division means a major ramp up in activity, with many projects to prepare for the new academic year.

The entire division is involved in a wide range of projects, major and minor, at all levels across all campuses, and the race and the pressure is on.

The purposes, just like the projects themselves, are many and varied. Some are led by the Property and Major Projects Team, some by the Minor Works Team and some by the Building Operations Team.

One of the biggest projects that will be getting underway this summer is the LED lighting upgrade as part of our energy reduction programme for our Net Zero by 2040 target. (More news about that to come soon).

There are works that help facilitate our ICT colleagues, who have embarked on an 18-month project to upgrade Wi-Fi across our campuses. Activities such as routine essential external window cleaning, which is a significant logistical programme, is also scheduled for many buildings, many on South Kensington Campus. Other works are strictly for individual spaces within buildings, while there are those that contribute towards logistics or decants for bigger picture long term refurbishments and moves for the faculties. Some are for compliance with statutory requirements, such as Fixed Wire Testing (FWT).

We’ve pulled together a selection of the many taking place.


At Hammersmith there are works enabling a new PET scanner to be installed in Wolfson basement. Less glamorous is the installation of new piping, while other refurbishment works in the Francis Fraser/Chapel building will provide office space for the Department of Surgery and Cancer to be consolidated onto the campus. Of course, the refurbishment of the Clinical Research Building – our first fossil fuel-free building – continues with the target of the National Heart and Lung Institute moving in through the end of the year.

Charing Cross

At Charing Cross work is already underway on the multi-floor refurbishment of the Reynolds building to consolidate staff office accommodation and student support on level three to allow level one to be redeveloped to provide teaching and student breakout space. The ground floor entrance is to be improved and made more welcoming at the same time.

South Kensington

At South Kensington Campus the rebranding programme will see updates to signage and wayfinding bringing Imperial’s fresh new identity into the buildings. There will be improvements to the troublesome main entrance revolving doors, and there will be upgrades to CCTV and the data systems that support this, benefitting everyone’s security and safety.

Safety for users of Dyson and Sir Alexander Fleming (SAF), ACEX, Bone, Roderic Hill, Huxley and Weeks buildings will be ensured through FWT. This is the testing of all the electrical installations (usually every five years) to ensure they are safe and compliant with regulations. This includes checking main panels, distribution boards, lights, plug sockets and the like, this will continue through the autumn. In SAF as the refurbishment for the new home for the Department of Infectious Disease is finished, the move in from the decommissioned St Mary’s will be taking place. (More about this in a separate article soon).

Also affecting the Dyson building are works by our neighbours, the Science Museum. They are planning on lifting paving/flooring of their Smith Centre courtyard to carry out drainage system works. This should improve the situation with the water ingress to Dyson basement areas for us.

In RCS1 the mezzanine roof is to be replaced. Starting mid-August skylights will be replaced in sections, along with roof repairs. This should stop leakages into the offices and a lab below on level 1M, while in chemistry repairs to the flat roof above 135 computer room will also remedy leaks. Also, Chemistry part of level eight is to be converted to a student counselling area.

As part of the larger campus de-steaming works a new steam generator at the back of Chemistry that will supply steam to SAF is to be installed through the summer. (More on this in a future article).

In Sir Ernst Chain building level three rooms 325 and 326 lab space is in the final stages of conversion into a computer teaching room.

The former President’s flat and the ground floor space at 170 Queens Gate are being given an overhaul to provide new meeting and conference space. (More on that to come in the autumn).

Light refurbishment including decorating and flooring works are underway in office locations at Blackett and Huxley Building. Also, Huxley 009 double height laboratory is undergoing a comprehensive refurbishment with works starting imminently. A solar array for teaching purposes at Bone Courtyard is being progressed.

Air conditioning is to be installed in laboratory spaces in ACEX, and in City and Guilds Building (CAGB) Mechanical Engineering (CAGB 012), around 30 offices to provide comfort cooling on levels five to seven while also in Mechanical Engineering the installation of exhaust ventilation for the engine test lab (CAGB123). Office accommodation in Bessemer B410/410A is being reconfigured for the Hamlyn Centre.

Other areas across the campus receiving specific attention include the Sherfield main catering kitchen, which will be electrified to support net zero ambitions, The Great Hall will be altered to make the space more flexible for different uses. There are numerous small labs and teaching spaces also being given attention to bring them up to date. Let’s not forget basic necessities, such as toilet facilities, being given upgrades.

But it’s not all about South Kensington Campus.

White City

At White CityProperty Division teams are supporting in various ways many of the big ongoing projects, such as infrastructure preparations on the south campus for major new developments. For example, the opening of the first section of the brand-new bridge that crosses the Central Line tube creating a new direct route for pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles from Wood Lane, and the first green outdoor community area on the north campusalong with new and improved entrance security barriers and automatic rising bollards there,

On top, they are managing projects such as a new reception waiting area and kitchen in Stadium House Imperial Clinical Trials Unit and a new cleaning materials safety store external to the building.

Silwood Park

Silwood Park is receiving a good deal of attention. The halls of residence are being upgraded – those in phase one of the programme will be ready for this September. The refectory is also being refurbished. An interesting project is the installation of new ‘shipping container’ type labs for ‘Target Malaria’ – to demonstrate the capability of this type of lab and how it can be used abroad. Header House is to be demolished to make way for this. New electrical supplies are being delivered as part of the project to upgrade the greenhouse area and there are new labs being created in Munro and offices in the Population Biology building. Last, but by no means least, the construction of the multi-use games area is underway!

Happy holidays!