Future Business Centre — Cambridge

Allia / Interserve

Jonathan Cook Landscape Architects / Bidwells / MLM / Davis Langdon Aecom

The Future Business Centre is located on the urban fringe of Cambridge. The centre is intended to nurture businesses that are good for society and the environment and was designed for the social enterprise charity Allia.

5th Studio were the masterplanners for the wider setting, which includes a construction training and skills centre for Cambridge Regional College. The Future Business Centre supports 'impact entrepreneurs' - charities learning to trade, social enterprises wanting to grow and companies developing products that result in social or environmental benefits. The project had a £7m budget and achieved BREEAM Excellent standard.

5th Studio developed a strong vision for the building, guided the project through planning and developed proposals for the building to RIBA Stage E, Employers Requirements, following which the project was delivered by the design and build contractor’s executive architect. The details and execution are clunkier than we would have hoped, but it is an amazingly successful workspace with a thriving ecosystem - as a tenant told us: "The interactions between tenants - both planned and spontaneous - plus the incubator for startups are really what this building is about".

View from the landscaped space at the heart of the ‘Hive’

Image of the entrance to the Future Business Centre from Kings Hedges Road

Spaces for intellectual exchange – a conference room opening on to the shared atrium

Tim Soar



Unit 14
21 Wren Street
London WC1X 0HF
t +44 (0)20 7837 7221
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Gwydir Street
Cambridge CB1 2LJ
t +44 (0)1223 516009
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2 King Edward Street
Oxford OX1 4HS
t +44 (0)1865 684004
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Stay in touch

We are keen to receive CVs and short portfolios from Part 1 and Part 2 designers. Please contact us via recruitment@5thstudio.co.uk

We actively encourage qualified applicants who are Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic, disabled, female and LGBTQIA+ as these groups are under-represented throughout the built environment professions.