Aviva and Socius appoint leading global architecture practice Gensler to lead design of cancer research campus in Sutton

08 May 2024

London Cancer Hub will be largest science project designed by Gensler in Europe

Aviva and mixed-use developer Socius announce today they have appointed leading global architecture and design practice Gensler to lead the design of a new district for cancer research and treatment at the London Cancer Hub (“LCH”) in Sutton, London. 

Gensler, which employs over 6,000 designers worldwide, has partnered with clients in the biotech, pharmaceutical and science-based industries to deliver lab, R&D and innovation facilities across the US and in Europe. Previous projects include Cure, a new healthcare innovation campus in New York; the IQHQ Research and Development District in San Diego which is set to be the largest urban commercial waterfront site along California’s Pacific coast; and the US headquarters for Denmark-founded biotech company, Genmab in Princeton, New Jersey.. 

LCH will be the largest science campus designed by Gensler in Europe, comprising 1 million sq ft of labs, R&D space, healthcare facilities and supporting accommodation. The new buildings will be set within new landscaped green spaces and integrate with existing world-class facilities on the five-hectare site including the Institute of Cancer Research, Royal Marsden Hospital and the Innovation Gateway, which provides incubator space for start-ups and spin-outs. 

The design approach is to create state-of-the-art facilities with an active ground floor, helping to showcase innovation and support local employment opportunities in science-based industries. The development will be designed to exceed current sustainability standards and is targeting net-zero carbon in operation. 

Gensler has been appointed to the project team alongside global engineering, design and sustainability consultancy Arup and the UK’s largest planning consultancy, Savills. 

Sophie White, Regeneration Lead, Aviva, said:

“We are pleased to bring together this world class team to design and develop the London Cancer Hub and advance the ambition to bolster the UK’s leading role in the global life sciences sector. Aviva alongside Socius look forward to partnering with local residents, businesses and Council to provide much needed jobs, training opportunities and wider community benefits”

Daniel May, Development Director, Socius, said:

“Gensler has an unrivalled track record in designing buildings and places for scientific discovery and we are excited to work with them as part of a world-class project team including Arup and Savills. There is a unique opportunity at the London Cancer Hub to create a vibrant ecosystem of labs, R&D space and healthcare facilities that will attract leading researchers and scientists from around the world to drive forward further progress in cancer treatment and diagnostics, as well as inspire those that live, work and study in the area.”

Richard Harrison, Co-Managing Director, Principal at Gensler, said:

“The site boasts a prestigious group of institutions, but we envisage a more connected and truly inclusive innovative district that will bring leading talent and businesses together to revolutionise cancer research and treatment. At Gensler, we recognise the transformative power of design to elevate health and wellness and are proud to be working on a project that will help accelerate scientific discovery.”