Budding development

Cambridge will be the home to a new research laboratory designed by Stanton Williams architects for the study of plant development, thanks to a gift of £82m from the Gatsby Charitable Foundation.



Construction work, led by the Kier Group, has now begun on the site, which is situated in the private working area of Cambridge’s Botanic Garden.



Due for completion in late 2010, the so-called Sainsbury Laboratory will house 120 scientists, supported by more than 30 additional staff.



They will be studying plant development in laboratory facilities designed in consultation with Bob McGhee, a leading American laboratory designer responsible for the design of more than 50 laboratories for the Howard Hughes Foundation.



The building will also provide a home for the University Herbarium, which contains over one million pressed and dried plant specimens from all over the world, including those collected by Charles Darwin on the Beagle voyage.