Assisting a University plan a new research facility


Client: University

Country: UK

Industry: Education


The client sought advice with a new research facility it is developing at a total project cost of £100m.

The site offered a number of complex technical challenges:

  • It is located in a busy urban environment;
  • Significant substructure work is needed; and
  • The site adjoins other buildings not owned by the University.

Fenwick Elliott advised on the two-phase process and worked with the client and project manager to provide a modified NEC3 contract. This was a departure from the University’s normal contract arrangements, which were based on the G/C Works form of contract, but was recommended by the project’s sponsors.


Because of the complexity and expense of the project, the client sought specific advice regarding project management and risk management – particularly in terms of health and safety. The insurance options too needed to be explored to ensure all project partners were adequately covered.

Fenwick Elliott advised the client on keeping a risk register and running risk workshops with the contractor.

All documentation relating to the project was drafted to international standards.


The new contract’s greater risk-focus will help our client deliver a successful project without exposing itself to any liabilities.

Ongoing training will be provided by Fenwick Elliott during the pre-construction phase to ensure all those working on the project – especially those unfamiliar with NEC demands – will fully understand the obligations of the contract.