The new Beecroft Building occupies a prominent site opposite Keble College Chapel in the Science Area of Oxford. The five storeys above ground provide office, teaching, and collaboration space aimed at theoretical physics, with three basement levels dedicated to research labs for experimental physics.
When designing the basement labs, we included a very high degree of vibration isolation, including isolation pads between columns and foundations, floating floors to labs, keel slabs, and air tables to provide the highest possible level of isolation.
The keel slabs are supported off the lowest level basement which is a sterile space reserved only for this purpose and serves no other function. Modelling of the construction sequence of the building showed that foundation movements of the adjacent building would be excessive, so we developed a strategy to minimise this movement. The solutions? Grout injection under the adjacent building, stabilising the soil, and reducing movement to acceptable magnitude.
Joining the Lindemann Building and Townsend Building, the Beecroft Building will help physics students and faculty at Oxford study, collaborate, and experiment.