Arboretum Building

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

The Project

The Royal Botanic Garden, Kew is a world-renowned botanical garden and scientific institute established in 1759, housing a significant collection of living and preserved plants and fungi. The Gardens contain the most diverse collection of plant species of any botanical gardens in the world. The low carbon embedded design of the new Arboretum building supports the UNESCO world-heritage site’s vision to become climate positive by 2030.

Close collaboration

Working as part of Mott MacDonald’s team, Lawray was commissioned to design a replacement Arboretum to house welfare offices, a canteen, and other facilities to serve a workforce who maintain the vast gardens and grow many species for future planting.

Low Carbon Embedded Design

The design of the building needed to be delivered within a strict budget whilst promoting low carbon embedded design, in keeping with the Royal Botanic Gardens strategy and vision. The cross laminated timber frame (CLT) building has been designed to meet BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ and sustainable features include locally sourced larch cladding, solar PV panels on the roof, air source heating, increased insulation, natural ventilation, and rainwater harvesting to flush WC’s.

Inspired by nature

Having collaborated with Mott Macdonald on various projects at Kew, Lawray built upon existing relationships with the design team, users and stakeholders to successfully complete the building. The new Arboretum has been welcomed by Kew who see the new amenities for the workforce as a positive contribution to the site.