De Montfort University - Hugh Aston Building

Design & Build

An innovative design and build construction of a new 4-storey extension to create additional 2,048 square metres of teaching space for De Montfort University.

Site Challenges

This challenging project was built within a courtyard and connecting to an existing 8-storey building. This presented considerable logistical constraints with the added complexity of this also being a live education site and adjusting the build process to adhere to companies and the university’s strict COVID-19 procedures. Despite the first phase of works being delivered during a Government-enforced national lockdown period, the project was completed on time.

Foundation / Frame/Envelope

The project involved removal of EPS render to the existing PACE Building and the installation of a new, compliant fire escape stair to the Clephan Building, which is linked to the existing Hugh Aston Building. The foundations consisted of Continuous Flight Auger (CFA) piles with reinforced ground beams to ensure no conflict with the foundations of adjacent buildings. The building’s steel frame construction incorporated metal deck upper floors and beam and block ground floor alongside SFS, external walls, a rendered façade, and a single-ply roof.


The building’s ventilation strategy incorporated Monodraught slim hybrid thermal mixing ventilation units interfaced with cladding louvres. Heating is provided via a combination of underfloor and trench heating to larger spaces, as well as radiators in cellular areas. LED lighting and data and access control systems also feature throughout the building.

Social Value and Environmental

To reduce the environmental impact of the building, we installed roof-mounted solar PV, created a green wall, and recycled crushed brick/concrete for temporary roads and hard standing.

Client testimonial

“Construction projects are always a challenge at the best of times, but with a fairly constrained site, working in a live environment and then the challenges of COVID-19, I have been very pleased with how Clegg have managed this project. I am extremely pleased with the finished building, and I am confident as staff and students begin to return, they will also be pleasantly surprised.”
- UD, Director, Estates & Facilities Directorate, De Montfort University