McLaren Technology Centre

McLaren Technology Centre, London - UK, Foster and Partners
Construction year: 2004
Address: Woking, Surrey | LONDON | United Kingdom | Visit Website
Latitude/Longitude: 51.346, -0.54773
Architect(s):

The McLaren Group is a collection of high-tech companies involved in the design and development of Formula One cars, high-performance road cars, electronic systems and composite materials. Since McLaren began competing in Formula One in 1966, it has established a global reputation as one of the most successful teams in the history of the sport.The McLaren Technology Centre provides a headquarters for the majority of the groups staff. It includes design studios, laboratories and testing and production facilities for Formula One and road cars, including the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren.

Viewed on plan, the building is roughly semi-circular, the circle being completed by a formal lake, which forms an integral part of the buildings cooling system. The principal lakeside facade is a continuous curved glass wall, developed in part using McLarens own technology, and shaded by a cantilevered roof. Internally, the building is organised around double-height linear streets, which form circulation routes and articulate fingers of flexible accommodation. These house production and storage areas on the lower levels, with top-lit design studios, offices and meeting rooms above. Directly behind the facade a circulation boulevard leads to areas for hospitality and to the staff restaurant, both of which look out across the landscape.

A Visitor Centre is located in a separate building at the entrance to the complex. It houses educational facilities, a temporary exhibition space and presentation theatre and is linked to the main centre by a subterranean building. This two-storey structure is buried underground – like the rest of the Technology Centre it is designed to make a minimal intervention in the landscape – and is visible only by its circular rooflight.

Client: McLaren Group
Consultants: Arup, Davis Langdon, Schmidt Reuter Partner, Terence O’Rourke, Claude R Engle Lighting, AMEC, Arlington Securities, Atelier Dreiseitl, Intec Management, WSP



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