University of Bristol: Fry Building

Bristol, UK

Completed in 2020, WilkinsonEyre was appointed in 2012 for the remodelling and refurbishment of the 10,000m² Grade II-listed Fry Building at The University of Bristol, at that time used for Biological Sciences, into a new home for the School of Mathematics.

Key to this design is relocating the entrance from the west to the north, with new public realm landscaping and a spacious foyer, giving access to the heart of the building.

The project includes the formation of a new, central lecture theatre and raised courtyard garden accessed via a glazed three-storey atrium. The atrium’s screen, based on a Voronoi 3D transformation of the foyer’s coffered ceiling, has a striking cellular design and lends extra support and solar shading.

The refurbishment provides a range of high-quality research, teaching and office spaces set over four floors. Undergraduate teaching and social study spaces occupy the lower floors while seminar spaces, academic and administrative offices and support rooms are provided on floors above. 

The layout has been carefully designed to encourage greater collaboration and interaction between staff and students alike; offices and research labs are arranged in clusters to provide space for informal gathering and exchange.

Recognising the potential in developing adjacent sites on campus, WilkinsonEyre has ensured that the new Fry Building enhances connectivity and creates opportunities for future expansion. Incorporating mathematical concepts into the design has established a distinctive new identity for the School and helps emphasise its presence on campus.