RIBA Award for Herefordshire Archive and Records Centre



Demonstrating an innovative approach to Archive design; the first Passivhaus Archive Building in the UK and the first building to meet the PD5454 Guidance on the Storage and Exhibition of Archival Materials, earned Architype a regional award at the RIBA West Midlands Award Ceremony last week!

As described by the judging panel, the Herefordshire Archive and Records Centre is an example of a ‘highly legible’ building, where the form of the building is distinctly expressive of its different uses. Arranged into two blocks, an unperforated cedar shingle clad box houses a 3 floor repository, whilst a two storey timber-framed building accommodates the administration, public research areas and restoration laboratories. A linear atrium separates the two blocks forming a light, airy and welcoming entrance while also providing a thermal buffer for the respository and stack ventilation for the front facing office administration block.

In keeping with Architype’s ethos, a highly sustainable approach has been applied to this building throughout, from adopting Passivhaus to reduce the overall energy use to an economic viewpoint, achieving an exceptionally low build cost of £1980/sqm. On going operational heating costs for the building are expected to be below £10,000 a year.

Councillor Roger Phillips, Cabinet Member for Economy and Culture commented, ‘Architype’s genuine passion for sustainable design has been evident in their approach. Adopting Passivhaus to achieve a low energy environment has proven to be the most logical solution and their design has truly captured our brief.’