King’s College Student Housing

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King’s College Student Housing
Kings College Cambridge

We recently completed work to extend and refurbish Old Garden Hostel for King’s College, Cambridge. The project involved the implementation of designs established in our masterplan, the first phase of which delivered a new wing of student accommodation.

Work on phase 2 included the complete renovation of the 1950’s hostel set within a mature listed landscaped garden, plus the addition of a wing and a new top storey to provide over 70 bedrooms with en suite bathrooms, three fellow’s sets, new gyp rooms and common room facilities.

The building is reportedly the most popular amongst students of all of King’s College accommodation.


An innovative use of Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) was employed for the walls and roofs to speed up construction and reduce the carbon footprint of the work. The existing building was completely re-serviced and new double glazed replacement steel windows were designed to match the original. The entrance hall was reconfigured to allow for disabled access and to link the two existing wings, the floors of which were 700mm above the entrance level and a lift was discretely added to provide disabled access to all levels.

David Valinsky Photography Old Garden Hostel-5
KCGH Smaller Kitchen Cutaway Render 07March24
Gyp room and terrace 1
KCGH Bedroom Cutaway Render 07March24
Typical top floor bedroom and en suite bathroom
KCGH Linear Kitchen Cutaway Render 07March24
Gyp room and terrace 2

The solid steel stair, manufactured in Sheffield, weighed more than 2 tonnes and was carefully craned into place through the roof light. Balustrades act as structural stringers that are supported off new and existing slab edges.

The stairwell was refurbished and a gold-painted stair added to access the new top storey accommodation.