Transforming St Hilda's College Site
Transforming our Site

Transforming our Site

We welcome your involvement in shaping a new era for St Hilda’s. Find out how you can make a gift to St Hilda's 125th anniversary campaign. 

 

View the latest film of our construction work

Our new buildings are emerging! Take a look at how they have progressed from the first stages to July 2019.

St Hilda's site map showing Phase 1 buildings

Aims and Objectives

We have embarked on a major redevelopment of accommodation and facilities for our students and staff on the College site. Undertaken in two phases, the planned building programme will enhance significantly the experience of St Hilda’s as a place to study, live, and work. In particular, it will provide a college room for all undergraduate students for the duration of their degree. It will transform the Middle Common Room for graduate students and provide new, high-quality teaching, office and social spaces. Redesigned gardens will embed the new buildings in the distinctive green space of St Hilda’s riverside setting.

Our initial phase transforms the front of the College site. It includes a new boundary building (replacing the old Porters’ Lodge and Middle Common Room) and a riverside pavilion (replacing Milham Ford). It will increase our student accommodation, offer new social and teaching spaces as well as a new chapel, and provide a new Middle Common Room, Porters’ Lodge and main entrance to the College, transforming the profile of St Hilda’s on Cowley Place.

St Hilda's Building Project timeline

 

We expect the second phase to transform the rear of the site. Initial project planning is under way to determine what it will provide. It will include new undergraduate accommodation. We are considering the capacity for an auditorium and seminar rooms to support teaching and research. Subject to planning, we anticipate this being available for academic year 2022/23.

St Hilda's College Entrance Tower seen from Cowley Place

Sustainability

We aim to reduce the polluting emissions from heat and power in our new buildings. The buildings' form and fabric will inherently help to control their internal climate. Thus, the demand for heating or cooling required to create comfortable work and living spaces will be reduced. This has helped to strip back many technological add-ons from the outset.

Natural ventilation is provided by openable windows. The windows’ sizes and deep-reveal depths also help to regulate and optimise daylight and sunlight penetration. The 3D modelling of the Pavilion led to refinement of the precast concrete fin sizes to optimise shading windows from sunlight around midday and in the early afternoon.

The exposed concrete structure of the Boundary Building and our natural ventilation strategy means that it will avoid overheating without the use of mechanical cooling systems. As the concrete has a high thermal mass, energy is slowly absorbed or released stabilising temperatures throughout the day.

A standalone Combined Heat and Power (CHP) system that is sized and controlled to meet the hot water baseloads of the new accommodation can deliver carbon and cost savings. By using waste heat from electricity generation, the integral inefficiency due to transmission of the electricity can be improved. The high hot water usage for student accommodation means that hot water generation represents a significant demand for energy throughout the year. Combined heat and power systems are recognized as capable of delivering significant energy and carbon savings compared with the separate generation of heat and power.

Using a central CHP engine to provide heating and hot water loads, the use of natural ventilation, and high thermal mass combine to make possible a 23.2% overall energy offset by low and zero carbon technologies. By doing this, we are also achieving a 10.5% reduction in CO2 emissions.

Project Updates

We will provide regular updates on our building project and our progress towards its completion. Follow the links below for further information.

Professor Sir Gordon Duff, Principal of St Hilda's College
Professor Sir Gordon Duff, Principal, St Hilda's College

Oxford has become one of the least affordable cities in the UK for housing... a College room can be as effective as a bursary, saving a student more than £1,500 over an academic year.

St Hilda's College - view of the Riverside Pavilion from the river bank
View of St Hilda's College from the Botanical Gardens
Entrance to St Hilda's College on Cowley Place
View of St Hilda's College entrance and tower.
View of St Hilda's Riverside Pavillion from the River Cherwell.
View of St Hilda's Riverside Pavillion and Boundary Building from South Garden
View of St Hilda's Riverside Pavillion and Boundary Building from the opposite river bank
Approaching St Hilda's entrance and tower from Cowley Place
Approaching St Hilda's entrance and tower from Cowley Place - night-time view
Approaching the Boundary Building from Hall Building
View towards the Boundary Building and Riverside Pavillion from Hall Building
St Hilda's College Tower
St Hilda's College - view of the Riverside Pavilion from the river bank
View of St Hilda's College from the Botanical Gardens
Entrance to St Hilda's College on Cowley Place
View of St Hilda's College entrance and tower.
View of St Hilda's Riverside Pavillion from the River Cherwell.
View of St Hilda's Riverside Pavillion and Boundary Building from South Garden
View of St Hilda's Riverside Pavillion and Boundary Building from the opposite river bank
Approaching St Hilda's entrance and tower from Cowley Place
Approaching St Hilda's entrance and tower from Cowley Place - night-time view
Approaching the Boundary Building from Hall Building
View towards the Boundary Building and Riverside Pavillion from Hall Building
St Hilda's College Tower