Case Study - Cardiff Business School (CARBS), Cardiff, UK

Project data

  • Customer
  • Cardiff University
  • Value
  • £13.5m
  • Area
  • 54,300 sq ft
  • Form of contract
  • JCT 2011 Design & Build
  • Programme duration
  • 73 weeks
  • Completion date
  • July 2014
  • Project Manager
  • Hills
  • Architect
  • Boyes Rees
  • Quantity Surveyor
  • Hills
  • Structural Engineer
  • Bingham Hall
  • M&E Engineer
  • Holloway


We created the Cardiff Business School (CARBS), a state-of-the-art, postgraduate facility for Cardiff University.

The client asked us to create a building with multi-purpose facilities that could be used all year round.

They wanted a sustainable and versatile design to support the university’s reputation as a forward thinking and progressive centre for ‘research and innovation’.

Cardiff University Business School
Cardiff University Business School - Lecture Theatre

The project

We built a four storey structure with twin-skin curtain walling that reduces acoustic interference and aids ventilation.

The structure contains multiple modular offices, flexible teaching spaces with bi-folding walls, two postgraduate common rooms and an impressive AV integrated trading room that provides real time monitoring of world markets and shares. At the heart of the facility is a large cavity atrium and break out area.

CARBS incorporates cutting edge sustainability solutions for maximum efficiency of water and energy consumption. Features include rainwater harvesting, photovoltaic installations and reclaimed roof gardens.

“This is now state-of-the-art. We’ve got an amazing amount of software. We’ve got Reuters Icon, we’ve got Bloomberg University, and both these have about 90% of the market in terms of trading share platforms and so students who come here will be able to just hit the ground running in any investment bank that requires traders. Students can take qualifications, which we facilitate using our great facilities here, so they can be Reuters qualified or Bloomberg qualified”

Professor Kent Matthews, Associate Dean for Engagement at Cardiff Business School


Cardiff Business School is worth an estimated £80 million to the Welsh economy per year, providing inspiring facilities for 3,000 students. To reflect this, the materials and construction supply chain were sourced as close to site as possible; with 56% of the supply chain based in Wales and 33% located within 10 miles of the site. On site carbon footprint was reduced by promoting green transport such as public transport links and cycling schemes.

Cardiff University Business School - Reception