The Stonehenge Environmental Improvements Project has been commissioned to improve the surroundings of the prehistoric monuments located at Stonehenge and to provide a tranquil and informative experience for visitors to the Stones and surrounding area.  Intrusive existing infrastructure near the Stones will be minimised; roads and car parks returned to grassland, and buildings removed or partially buried to minimise visual impact on the landscape.

Norman Disney & Young (NDY) has designed the building services for a sustainable Visitor Centre with minimal environmental impact.  The building services design has been tailored to meet the unique requirements of this World Heritage Site of enormous archaeological importance. NDY’s design has met the resulting challenges through an emphasis on passive and innovative design techniques:

  • A large canopy provides shading to the Visitor Centre in summer while allowing winter sun and year round views out into the landscape
  • Mixed mode ventilation incorporating heat recovery further reduces the building heating and cooling loads
  • The reduced heating and cooling loads are met by a renewable energy  open loop ground source system providing underfloor heating and cooling.  Use of the aquifer water for cooling avoids the capital and ongoing maintenance costs of a chiller – the cool ground water is pumped straight through the underfloor piped system
  • The same bore hole system provides the drinking water for the site, avoiding the below ground disturbance of connecting to the public utilities several kilometres away
  • All water at the Visitor Centre is recycled and includes a rainwater harvesting system to meet the toilet flushing, irrigation and cleaning water requirements.  Potable water demands are further reduced through the use of a vacuum drainage system which in turn minimises below ground disturbance at this archaeologically sensitive site.

Our partnership with English Heritage began in 2001 and this continuing involvement reflects our commitment to meeting the client’s goals of a truly innovative, low carbon design at this globally renowned archaeological site.

This project received the 2016 Civic Trust Awards, The Michael Middleton Special Award: a memorial to the former Civic Trust Director Michael Middleton OBE, for a restoration project or new build within a conservation area was presented to Stonehenge Exhibition and Visitor Centre by Denton Corker Marshall for English Heritage.