UCL East Masterplan

Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

University College London (UCL) is establishing a new campus in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, within the Park’s Cultural and Education District. The 4.63 hectare site is being developed in partnership with the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) to provide 180,000m2 (GIA) of development, including adaptable academic space and student accommodation.

UCL East is envisaged as a radical new model for how a global, research led university can be embedded in the community.

The masterplan facilitates communication and interaction – fostering academic cross-disciplinary collaboration and enhancing teaching and learning relationships. It captures the unique identity of UCL within a new context.

NHA were part of the LDA led team - acting as specialists in academic environments and higher education building types.

Testing ideas

The masterplan is being realised in a series of phases and NHA went on to develop the space strategy for the initial 50,000m2 phase including an outline brief for the first academic users.

Technical studies included the assessment of decisions about key parameters such as floor plate dimensions and building heights – looking at their impact on cost, efficiency and environmental quality.

The same aspects were tested for their potential to accommodate more demanding special uses and facilitate future adaptability

Space requirements of the potential first users were established and workshops held to understand possible synergies and collaborations across the academic disciplines.

Test fits, which matched these uses to the emerging building designs, explored how UCL’s vision of a vibrant and engaging university open to its community could be realised.

Project Team

  • Client: University College London (UCL)
  • Masterplanners: LDA
  • Cost Planning: Arcadis
  • Engineers: Buro Happold
  • Sustainability consultant: Buro Happold
  • Landscape Architect: LDA
  • Transport: Momentum
  • Public Consultation: Soundings


  • Shortlisted: Planning Awards