Centre for Life, Newcastle upon Tyne

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The Life branding used by the Centre for Life - the f is meant to resemble a chromosome.
English: The Centre for Life (www.life.org.uk), branded simply as Life, is a science village and event location in the city of Newcastle upon Tyne, England. Designed by Sir Terry Farrell, it opened in 2000, and occupies the site directly to the west of Newcastle Central Station. It contains research, education and conference facilities, some retail units, and a visitor attraction - the Life Science Centre.

Location & components[edit]

The plot it occupies is roughly rectangular, aligned N-S, bounded by:

  • Central Parkway to the east
  • Westmoreland Road to the north
  • Marlborough (road) to the west
  • Forth Banks to the south

There are two buildings on the site, whose exteriors together describe a rough oval shape. Cutting diagonally SW-NE through the northern half of the oval is the former alignment of Scotswood Road, through a wide open gap in the SW 54°58′03″N 1°37′18″W / 54.967493°N 1.621578°W / 54.967493; -1.621578 and through a narrower gap in the NW 54°58′06″N 1°37′15″W / 54.968235°N 1.620789°W / 54.968235; -1.620789, bridged by a lattice and also featuring a walkway connecting both halves. Inside the oval, this gap has been widened to form Times Square, an open space. The building on the north and west side of square is Biomedicine West. On the southern side of the square is the Market Keeper's House, a small rectangular Grade II listed building, dating back to 1840 when this area was a cattle market. South and east of the square is the other building, which forms the larger part of the site, incorporating various uses. Taking up the portion along most of the east side of the square is Biomedicine East, with a bar, restaurant and nightclub on the ground floor/basement levels, fronting onto Times Square. Taking up almost the entire bottom semi-circle area is the Life Science Centre. In between those two main uses is a space occupied by the Life Educational Laboratories (Lifelab) and the Life Conference and Banqueting facility. Both of these areas have their entrances on the outside (eastern facade), although conference centre occupies the outer half of this space and Lifelab the inner half, with the entrance being at the end of an E-W internal corridor. The locations of all these features are as follows:

The Biomedicine wings are mid-rise buildings with between 3 and 5 levels of window floors on their exterior (there are more the west side due to the slope of the ground). The eastern half comprising Life Educational Laboratories, Life Conference and Banqueting and half of the Life Science Centre are lower, have no discernible floor levels on their largely sheer exterior sides walls (again, being taller to the south than the north due to the prevailing slope). The western half of the Life Science Centre doesn't have an exterior wall as such, with the walls and roof being moulded from a single copper canopy, which has the metal's distinctive green oxidised colouring.

Images[edit]

General views[edit]

Exterior views[edit]

North eastern[edit]

Walkway/sign lattice over the NE entrance[edit]

Eastern[edit]

South eastern[edit]

Southern[edit]

North western[edit]

Western[edit]

Life Science Centre copper covering[edit]

Exterior paving[edit]

Times Square[edit]

Life Science Centre entrance[edit]

Market Keeper's House[edit]