Eastern Gateway Building

Introduction / summary

Previously called the Music Media Arts and Digital Creativity (Building), this project has been re-named the “Eastern Gateway Building“.

Eastern Gateway Building is one of a number of development and environmental enhancements projects located in the north east part of the main campus.

Royal Holloway’s Music and Media Arts departments are international leaders in their sectors; as such the new Eastern Gateway Building will need to accommodate state-of-the-art facilities in a new shared building, forming a new landmark to the campus entrance.

This new building will nurture, support and enhance the departments’ research, teaching capabilities and reputations. The combination of new teaching studios, practice rooms, edit suites, with additional shared facilities – such as a café and lecture theatre to be used by the whole university – will aim to create a new hub for creativity and excellence.


The proposed development site is located towards the northern edge of the main campus near the Piggery Gate entrance. The core development plot has an approximate area of 0.28 ha and currently forms part of the existing car park (Car Park 4) to the south east of the Orchard Building and Handa Noh Theatre. The site is bound to the south by dense trees and vegetation, additional car parking provision to the east and a campus access road to the north and west.

Figure 1: Location plan superimposed over the 2015 Estate Plan

Relevance to the Estate Plan

The Estate Plan identifies the proposed site for the Eastern Gateway Building as part of Plot B05. The schedule of development identifies this site as having the potential for a 3/4 storey building providing 9,300m2 of academic or operational floor space. The Estate Plan annotation identifies Plot B05 as a ‘landmark operational building’ with the opportunity to incorporate taller features to create a focal point for the approaching routes.

The intention of delivering academic floor space in this area has not changed, though the intention is now to split what was shown as one large building into two, with an appropriate separation distance between the two to create a high quality public realm.

A sustainable urban drainage solution is currently being investigated in order to serve the needs of this building and the immediate area. This will use and improve the storage capacity of the existing Ripley Springs pond as part of a wider Green Space and Visitor Management Strategy devised in 2015 and required by Natural England.

The new building will be ultimately served by a new multi-storey car park which is proposed to the west.


Fielden Clegg Bradley Studios are the appointed Lead Consultant and Architect for this project. They are at a relatively early stage of the design process, where testing of initial options to meet a target accommodation schedule are being considered.


Concept design / layouts will be available for public review at the September 2019 engagement event and during the comments invited during the subsequent consultation period.

Planning application / reserved matters submission

The project will be progressed by means of a reserved matters submission under the 2015 outline planning permission”. Add after the last sentence of this section: As referenced in the Ripley Springs Project Summary page, the university are progressing with the landscape and ecological enhancements to this area in advance of potential engineering works to increase the capacity of the existing storm water pond. This will follow, as required, in due course. This submission will cover the erection of the building, associated landscape and environmental enhancements in the adjacent Ripley Springs area. Engineering works to improve the storm and surface water capacity of the existing Ripley Springs pond will form part of a wider sustainable urban drainage strategy for the building and surrounding.


Subject to the finalisation of the accommodation brief, technical, design and visual studies, and pre-application discussions with the council, it is anticipated that a full planning application will be submitted in December 2019.

A contractor has not yet been appointed to this project.

Link with other Estate projects and plans

The Eastern Gateway Building is one of a number of development and environmental enhancement projects located in the north-east part of the main campus. A summary of the projects being progressed in the wider setting of the building is set out below.

Enterprise Building. This contemporary building will sit aside other new academic buildings around the new Piggery Gate junction, details of which were approved in 2015. The 2,900sqm building will house cyber-security and associated cutting-edge academic and research functions considered to be of national importance as technological advances lead to changes in our society. Runnymede Borough Council granted planning permission, subject to conditions, on the 31st July 2019. The university and its design team (Stride Treglown) are currently addressing pre-commencement conditions and enabling works to enable site set up in November/December, with the planned demolition of the existing building scheduled for January/February 2020.

Relocation of the Handa Noh Theatre. This modest single-storey building, and the adjacent Orchard Building, is required to be demolished to make way for the Enterprise Centre. Activities within the Orchard Building are to be temporarily relocated elsewhere across the campus. The Handa Noh Theatre accommodates a sacred Japanese stage. This stage, gifted to the university in the 1990’s will be rehoused in a modular building erected to the north of the A30 in an area recently cleared of vegetation. A project team has been appointed and site investigations are underway. A detailed accommodation brief is being finalised, and designs will emerge once this is signed off.

Piggery Gate junction. The Piggery Gate junction is currently closed to traffic. Under the 2015 Estate Plan and outline planning permission, a new all movements four-arm junction was designed and granted detailed consent with the support of Surrey County Council as the Local Highway Authority.

This junction is required to be in place prior to an increase in parking spaces within the main campus south of the A30. This event will be start with the new multi-storey car park close to the Piggery Gate junction, but this is some time off.

The university wish to bring forward the works linked to the wider changes in the Piggery Gate area in respect of the Enterprise Centre and the Eastern Gateway Building. Since 2015, detailed underground site investigations have resulted in the junction shifting approximately 6m to the west: the fundamental design will remain unchanged. This refinement allows for a larger landscaped area close to the proposed Enterprise Centre and an opportunity to repair, realign and enhance the red brick wall facing Egham Hill which will celebrate the heritage of the campus while having a backdrop of modern academic buildings.

Ripley Springs environmental enhancements. This area accommodates an historic storm water reduction pond, but is currently hidden from view and is overgrown. The intention, in line with the Green Space and Visitor Management Plan, developed by the university in Feb 2015 in response to Natural England requirements, is to open up the area, increase the capacity and function of the pond as part of a sustainable urban drainage strategy and start to open up the area to visitors through the provision of new pedestrian routes. The pond will be visible from the Eastern Gateway Building, which will also help to provide the start of the pedestrian routes through this area.

Ongoing investigations by the university, and discussions in relation to the scope of works linked to the Eastern Gateway Building immediately to the north, have resulted in the drainage (engineering) works being incorporated within the building design. The university is progressing with initial investigations relating to the environmental (landscape and ecological) enhancements and opening the area to visitors in a manner which does not prejudice the ability to bring forward storm water attenuation proposals in due course.

Please take the time to download and take a look at the exhibition board. We trust that you will find these helpful.

Download (July 2019 Boards)
Download (Sept 2019 Boards)

If you have any comments in relation to the emerging project, please complete the following survey.

View Survey

The university has agreed to extend the period by which online responses can be submitted. The survey will remain open until midnight on the 13th October. If you have supplied comments, you do not need to complete the form again. The link provided will take you to a copy of the September consultation questions. This link is provided as we understand certain individuals experienced difficulties in submitting comments during September.

If you wish to make additional comments on any development project being promoted by the university, please email these to consultation@stridetreglown.com

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