Laing O’Rourke wins medical contract

By Sandy Guthrie14 March 2011

A shot of how the UKCMRI will look

A shot of how the UKCMRI will look

Laing O'Rourke has been appointed main contractor for the UK Centre for Medical Research & Innovation (UKCMRI), a £ 600 million (€ 692 million) charitable medical research institute at St Pancras in central London.

Claiming to be the largest privately-owned construction solutions provider in the UK, Laing O'Rourke said it had the right blend of technical expertise and construction resources to ensure delivery of the project.

Plans for the proposed institute were approved by the London Borough of Camden at a meeting in December and agreed by the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, in January. Construction work is expected to begin on the site in late spring.

The pioneering laboratories aim to become a world class facility for medical research with 1,500 staff. It will bring together biologists, chemists, physicists, engineers, computer scientists and mathematicians with some of the UK's leading hospitals to focus in new ways on understanding the underlying causes of health and disease.

The UKCMRI charity has been founded by the Medical Research Council, Cancer Research UK, the Wellcome Trust and UCL (University College London). The institute will combine scientists from Cancer Research UK's London Research Institute at Lincoln's Inn Fields, the MRC's National Institute for Medical Research and UCL.

UKCMRI's construction director Andy Smith added: "After a lengthy and detailed evaluation process, Laing O'Rourke was chosen as the main contractor for the development of UKCMRI. The Laing O'Rourke bid scored the highest technically and commercially of the tenders received, and represented the best value for money."

Roger Robinson, chief executive of Laing O'Rourke's Europe hub, said: "Our comprehensive understanding of the local issues and commitment to the key stakeholders involved will be instrumental in meeting this complex engineering challenge."

UKCMRI and Laing O'Rourke said they were creating a community liaison group to meet monthly to ensure the views of local people on the building process were heard and to ensure residents were kept up-to-date on the progress of the development.

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