Cowbridge company G. Oakley & Sons has been appointed to manage the build for Techniquest’s Science Capital project.
The firm has commenced on site this month and it will take approximately 35 weeks to complete.
The Cardiff-bay based science centre will remain open during most of the build, however, will close in September for some internal works.
The Science Capital project will radically transform the UK’s longest running science centre, increasing its footprint by 60% to house brand new innovative content.
The scheme will also include a new vibrant public entrance, coffee shop and retail space.
Adam Oakley, of G. Oakley & Sons said: “We’re thrilled to have been appointed by Techniquest for this project. To work with such an institutional brand is a big honour and we can’t wait to play a part in transforming this much-loved science discovery centre.
“As part of our commitment to this particular scheme, we will be running an educational programme to help local young people understand what’s involved in a project of this scale. We will be looking to make the construction site part of the experience for school children visiting Techniquest by creating porthole windows to see our team at work. We will also be providing educational information prior to their visit so they know in advance what to look out for once they’ve donned their mini high viz jackets and hard hats.”
The appointment of G. Oakley & Sons is the latest in a line of local businesses contracted to work with Techniquest on the Science Capital project including architects HLM, planning consultants Wardell Armstrong, project managers Lee Wakemans and engineers Hydrock.
Lesley Kirkpatrick, CEO of Techniquest said: “G. Oakley & Sons grasped our vision straight away and demonstrated how they would meet the timetable and deliver on budget which were vital elements to us. This project will be transformational in its scale but most importantly will open up the door to science for all.
“I’m absolutely thrilled that G. Oakley & Sons wanted to combine its live working environment with that of a learning experience for schools visiting us too. Going above and beyond like this can only be a positive thing in helping to break down the barriers of STEM subject selection among school-aged children.
“The new Techniquest will enable us to increase the age range and diversity of our audiences and, in turn help us to increase our visitor numbers. This will provide vital additional income to ensure Techniquest continues to provide a first-class visitor experience in Wales for years to come.”
The £5.5m Science Capital project is being was supported by the Inspiring Science Fund, a scheme co-funded by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and Wellcome. Techniquest has also received funding from the Moondance Foundation, Garfield Weston Foundation and Welsh Government’s ‘Invest to Save’ fund.