Case Study - Ninewells Medical School, University of Dundee, Dundee, UK

Project data

  • Customer
  • University of Dundee
  • Value
  • £4.2m
  • Area
  • 6,549 sq ft
  • Form of contract
  • SBC / Design & Build / Scotland 2011
  • Programme duration
  • 89 weeks
  • Completion date
  • November 2013
  • Project Manager
  • Gardiner & Theobald
  • Architect
  • Archial
  • Quantity Surveyor
  • Gardiner & Theobald
  • Structural Engineer
  • Struer
  • M&E Engineer
  • K J Tait


With a vision to provide students with new state-of-the-art facilities, the University of Dundee upgraded their teaching accommodations to enhance the student’s experience.

The construction of the building was carried out in three phases.

Phase one:
Construction of a 6,549 sq ft extension to the north side of the existing building, forming a library, IT suite and open-plan study area.

Phase two:
Refurbishment of an old IT suite, forming new meeting areas, group teaching spaces, open-plan areas and medical illustration work area.

Phase three: 
Creation of open-plan work areas and an undergraduate office for the medical school, as well as the refurbishment of a communal hub area.


The project

The Medical School was built in the 1960s, which meant the fabric of the teaching accommodation required upgrading. By refurbishing and extending its facilities, the university has been able embrace modern ways of teaching methods, and provide its students with state-of-the-art facilities.

Through careful analysis and value engineering, our team saved the client £500K. Although a cost savings was made, the university benefited from a range of improvements, including an alternative lighting specification, changes to the smoke/fire damper system, a reduction in curtain walling and alternative roof coverings.

The site is not only next to the medical teaching school, but also Ninewells Hospital, and both buildings remained in use throughout. Linking up the new mechanical and engineering services to the existing building was one of the key challenges during the project.

ISG also worked with students at the university to deliver a series of health workshops for both staff and subcontractors. Senior medical students addressed the teams on a variety of health issues, including depression and prostate cancer.


The project is targeted to achieve a BREEAM rating of ‘Very Good’, and while early design points were not captured, ISG have worked closely with the BREEAM Consultant to ensure all construction phase points are secured.