Overall winner of the fbe Awards 2016
A university’s carbon neutral laboratory building which is a centre of excellence for green chemistry has been crowned the overall winner of the East Midlands fbe Awards 2016.
The GlaxoSmithKline Carbon Neutral Laboratory for Sustainable Chemistry at the University of Nottingham’s Innovation Park on the Jubilee Campus had earlier also taken the top prize in the Non-residential category at the annual awards ceremony held at the City Rooms in Leicester.
The building has been constructed by the university 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. 
Nominated by main contractor Morgan Sindall Construction & Infrastructure Ltd, the project team also included architects Fairhursts Design Group (FDG), structural engineer Curtins Consulting and AECOM (BREEAM and LEED assessors, concept structural engineer, M&E consultant), KLH Sustainability (Embodied Carbon Consultant), and Anthesis (Embodied Carbon Auditor).
The judges said: “Superb collaboration between stakeholders sits behind many of the award-winning attributes of this project. From striking design, to high-levels of sustainability, this scheme showcases world-class design using natural materials. The judging panel felt this scheme far surpasses any other submission in terms of its contribution to the creation of new employment which should be acknowledged.  An exceptional building that will become a world hub for new science while simultaneously delivering an architectural landmark for generations of students to enjoy.”
The winner of the Residential category was a short-stay accommodation scheme for nationwide charity Canine Partners at Osgathorpe in north west Leicestershire. The £750,000 project is part of a three-phase £4 million investment to create a new Midlands centre for the charity, which trains assistance dogs for people with disabilities. It was nominated by North Midland Construction PLC. Other members of the team were architects PWP, structural engineer ASP Consulting and project manager/employer’s agent Baqus Ltd.
The judges said: “This scheme expertly showcases the use of low carbon materials resulting in accommodation that meets the precise needs of the brief. Using a variety of materials and finishes, the building is both aesthetically pleasing yet delivers a strong visual identity. The judging panel was particularly impressed by the way the design reflected the practical needs of its residents.”
Nottingham’s new £3.7 million London Road Fire Station, built by J Tomlinson Ltd for Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service, took the honours in the Regeneration category. The architect was CPMG, structural engineer Curtins, project manager was CPMG’s client Turner & Townsend, and mechanical and electrical consultants was Couch Perry Wilkes.
The judges said: “Demonstrating excellent use of technology and natural elements, this is a complex project needing to take into account the practical needs of the fire station and blend with the city’s existing south side regeneration plans. This scheme should be highly commended for showcasing our industry to the local community and indeed showcasing construction as a profession.”
A new category at this year’s awards ceremony, which attracted around 150 professionals from across the East Midlands construction, property and development sector, was Best Rising Star – an award for the younger generation of professionals who are making a significant contribution to the built environment.
Part II Architectural Assistant at RG+P in Leicester, Sarah Grocock, was named the inaugural winner after impressing the judges with her academic and practical experience and abilities.
The judges said: “Sarah’s contribution to the construction industry is already impressive. She is a true rising star and will undoubtedly go on to influence other young construction professionals throughout her career. The judging panel were impressed by her boundless energy and commitment to learning and developing her skills. Without question Sarah has already made a significant contribution to our industry through her work on a range of housing schemes and will no doubt become an influential architect.” 
Her nominators William Smedley and James Badley said: “Sarah already has a host of achievements and a wealth of talent. As her passion for the industry grows, so does her knowledge and ability. Sarah will undoubtedly go on to lead and influence the construction industry.”
Jef Todd, regional chairman of the East Midlands fbe and business development director at civil and structural engineering company BSP Consulting, was delighted by the success of the awards ceremony and praised the diversity and strength of the nominations.
“We had an excellent array of nominations from across the region and across a range of sectors, illustrating the high standard of developments that are being completed in the East Midlands built environment,” he said. “I’d like to congratulate all those who were shortlisted, as well as the winners, and thank the construction, property and development sector in the region for their support of these awards, which focus on sustainability, good design, and interaction and engagement with the local community.”
The awards, hosted once again by former BBC East Midlands political editor John Hess, were sponsored by D W Hicks Building Co Ltd, integrated building solutions company J Tomlinson Ltd, civil engineering, mechanical and electrical (M&E) engineers BSD, engineering and environmental consultants M-EC Consulting Development Engineers and chartered accountants and business advisers Duncan & Toplis. Civil and structural engineering company BSP Consulting sponsored the drinks reception. 
During the evening, £1,800 was raised for the NSPCC.
The fbe is a national organisation, with branches across the UK and is the longest established networking group for the property, development and construction industries. As well as running the annual awards scheme, the organisation also organises a number of social and other events. The East Midlands branch covers Leicestershire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire.
Press release issued by Nottingham based pr company Perfect 10 PR www.perfect10pr.co.uk