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From building planning and design, to enabling effective asset strategies and workplace optimisation, Atkins has unrivalled experience in delivering professional services for the built environment.


Atkins has been a pioneer in the built environment for more than 70 years. With our experts delivering high quality, innovative services we can provide clients with solutions that span the entire spectrum of the building and property sector.

We provide professional technical services associated with the property, infrastructure and design markets. With architects, designers, multidisciplinary engineers, building surveyors, project/programme managers and a broad range of specialists, we deliver projects of all kinds and sizes, from initial study to completion for both public and private sector clients in a range of sectors.

In these challenging times, we also enable our clients to deliver strategies that contribute to the overall performance of their organisations by getting the best from their building portfolios.

Our range of services allows clients to deliver quality whilst balancing the need to reduce costs, increase efficiencies, save energy and cut waste. With a vast experience of working with major public and private sector organisations, we can work with you to deliver significant results by putting you in total control.



A tool to help organisations put people’s wellbeing at the heart of their building design.

> Read more about wellbriefing



Atkins’ breadth and depth of expertise in the building and property sector includes:


As one of the world’s leading architectural firms, our architecture teams produce cutting edge design across a broad spectrum of building types, from high-rise mixed-use international developments to innovative solutions which breathe new life into existing buildings, working in both the public and private sectors.

Interiors and workspace

We design interiors for visual impact and for function, for example, creating healing environments in medical facilities and designing spaces which promote learning in schools. We also provide the knowledge and capability required to deliver the most effective and flexible use of space.

Property asset management strategy and advisory services

Our experience and unique independent approach puts you in complete control of assets you are responsible for in your properties. With our strategy and supply chain consultancy and our knowledge and property asset management services, we are able to provide our clients complete transparency across their estate and information to make informed strategic decisions, from budgets and policies to supplier contracts and maintenance programmes.


Our building design capability also includes our extensive teams of structural and building services engineers and sustainability consultants. Our multidisciplinary teams combine traditional methods with modern technology whilst keeping abreast of challenging issues such as sustainability and global climate change.

Low carbon leadership

Our carbon critical tools can reduce the carbon emissions of your existing property portfolios. Our low carbon designers and engineers work to optimise the carbon credentials of building projects within the agreed brief, programme and budget, resulting in simpler, more durable buildings with efficiencies in design, construction and operation.


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Ian Milne
19 Oct 2016

What we’re witnessing today is the growth not just of high-rise buildings, but of high-rise living. In many cities across Southeast Asia, high-rise, high-density living is now being embraced in a way the West have never seen. So if we’re asking whether such huge buildings are justified, it’s worth considering the value of their new sense of purpose. In many Western countries, such as the UK, high-rise blocks of flats have historically been associated with economic deprivation, or more recently, as multimillion ‘lifestyle’ bachelor pads – with not much to offer anyone in between. But that’s certainly not the case in cities like Hong Kong, where extended families wanting a convenient central address live happily next door to each other, supported by excellent, nearby transport links to get around the city easily. Perhaps it’s by moving upwards, and not outwards, that these new high-rise buildings are working hardest, in conserving the surrounding countryside? Planners aren’t making the costly mistakes of urban sprawl that we’ve see in the West. Take Hong Kong for example – it’s one of the most densely populated places in the world, yet has a higher percentage of land left as wilderness than the UK. Hong Kong is also an exemplar for ‘transport oriented development’. Driven by ongoing efforts to cut emissions and improve air quality, in essence this means incorporating very close access to public transport from the new building from the outset.  As a result car ownership and usage, a major cause of carbon emissions,

Asia Pacific ,

Philip Watson
26 Sep 2016

I read a worrying article recently. It said that our teachers’ health and wellbeing is at an all-time low. It gave some even more worrying statistics: that 79% of teachers feel anxious about their workload and one in ten have been prescribed anti-depressants. These statistics are shocking and made me question, as architects and designers working in the schools sector – what can we do to make a difference to teacher wellbeing in the workplace? The article suggested to teachers that there were five ways to boost their wellbeing: mindfulness, love and friendship, exercise, psychotherapy and learning. But there is something we as architects can do to help teachers before they get to breaking point – we can ensure they find themselves in the least stressful and unhealthy environments possible.  Designing for wellbeing in a school environment is as much about designing for teachers as it is for students. We need to design schools that encourage teachers to move, to connect to one another and their surroundings, and to feel ownership about the building where they spend much of their time. We also need to give them the best physical environment – lots of natural light, good ventilation and comfortable temperatures – so that their surroundings never interfere with their ability to teach and their students’ ability to learn. These are basic principles we can apply to every school we design so that teachers can focus on what’s important – providing effective and innovative learning environments for our children –

UK & Europe ,

Donna Huey
01 Sep 2016

A perfect storm of risks threatens even the simplest of resiliency goals. There are key dangers to pay attention to while evaluating the relevance of context, contracting, and people as critical factors to achieve goals. Starting with natural risks, resiliency is how vulnerable one is to hazards—understanding what the pattern or intensity of those hazards is, the response time, and how one can recover. There has been an 80 percent increase in the growth of climate-related disasters between 1980 and 2009. In 29 years, losses have doubled because of disaster. The increasing densities of urban centers, particularly in coastal cities, only push the limit of property and human losses. Even when attributing some of the loss increases to improved reporting, scientists argue two-thirds of the increase is ‘real.’ Certainly, if one were to dispute the increase in frequency, it would still be clear the rising costs are related to increased density in urban centers.. The key challenges of infrastructure risk include: • adequately maintained structures; • the pace of technology and new material adoption to improve asset life and performance; and • prioritizing maintenance or recovery plans based on risk and life line analysis. The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) 2013, Report Card for America’s Infrastructure estimates the need for $3.6 trillion to raise our infrastructure to acceptable standards. Further, ASCE’s 2015 Report Card for New York’s Infrastructure showed only modest improvements with roads, bridges, and wastewater still reflecting ‘D’ grades. Another risk to consider involves cyber security. Recent reports predict in the

North America ,

Herminio Gonzalez
16 Aug 2016

In 2002, legislation passed in Florida allowing the use of private providers to conduct building code inspections and plan reviews for new and existing building projects. Private providers are licensed engineers or architects who also hold a standard certificate to perform inspections for additions and alterations (1,000 square feet or less). The boom of construction in South Florida led owners to begin looking for private providers and inspection/review services to ease the process. Today, many private professionals and engineering firms conduct state-required reviews and inspections in the area. And while other states have adopted similar legislation and are testing the waters, the private provider business has fully matured in Florida, with owners frequently taking this route in lieu of using municipal building department personnel. So what can others inside and outside the state learn from the experiences of South Florida? And what should owners be aware of as they consider adopting this approach? Expediting the process must not compromise quality or compliance. The complexity of building codes and the lengthy permitting process creates a sizeable demand for reviewers and inspectors, project expedition and stringency in planning and reviews. Construction time is money and expediting is important. However, there can be no room for shortcuts in quality or compliance. A top-notch private provider firm embraces this concept as fundamental to the entire process. Collaborative relationships are key. Good private providers truly look out for the owner’s best interest and seek to build long-lasting positive partnerships. They effectively act as a professional liaison between the owner, designers, contractors and

North America ,


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The IMX project site lies within the world-class Hongqiao Transportation Hub, which connects the airport, high speed rail and Shanghai public transit system. The winning Atkins concept architecturally expresses international trade and creates places and spaces where people exchange goods and ideas, thus creating optimal opportunities for the IMX brand to create wealth. The contract will also see Atkins develop its iconic architectural designs for the IMX exhibition centre and supporting commercial development covering approximately 150,000 square metres. All buildings within the Atkins masterplan have been designed to meet or exceed China’s three-star Green Building Standard.

China ,

The Wessal Bouregreg project is a visionary scheme to transform the cultural and social landscape of Morocco’s capital, Rabat. We designed the masterplan for this inner city site, as well as two of its most iconic buildings - the Library of National Archives of the Kingdom of Morocco, and the House of Arts and Culture - for Wessal Capital, an investment fund for tourism and real estate projects in the Kingdom of Morocco. The masterplan will create a new national cultural hub for Morocco, and will enhance Rabat’s position on the world stage as a destination to enjoy internationally important historic archives as well as new arts and cultural offerings. The inspiration for the scheme began with an investigation into the rich cultural history of Morocco and its unique historic development of mathematical
Richmond Education and Enterprise Campus is a 20,000sqm development featuring a new, state-of-the-art further education college, as well as a new free school, a special educational needs (SEN) school and a Technology Hub run by Haymarket Publishing. The regeneration of the existing site at Richmond-upon-Thames College will deliver an integrated, innovative education campus that brings together the best of industry with the best of teaching and learning. The first phase of building will make a strong, contemporary statement befitting its landmark position on an important gateway into London. It will deliver a variety of core curriculum spaces for business, creative and lifestyle disciplines, including e-enabled spaces for business incubation, innovation and collaboration with local businesses. Our design proposals reflect the College’s vision for a high quality, contemporary and professional college; the central atrium design provides open, flexible and transparent learning environments to promote inclusivity and encourage collaboration and information exchange. The atrium contains a variety of flexible activity spaces that encourage self-directed and group learning styles, which in turn stimulate learner motivation and improve student performance. The second phase, a

UK ,

After 25 years of serving the community with its iconic water flumes Coral Reef Waterworld is being revolutionised as part of Bracknell Forest Council’s pledge to invest in the long term future of the borough. Atkins has been appointed to prepare a concept design to completely transform Coral Reef. The project includes the demolition and complete removal of the existing timber glulam beam roof over the main pool hall and replacement with a new steel truss roof which will be split into two sections with a centrally located roof light running its length. The existing ancillary roofs over the changing village, Sauna World and Coconut Grove (café) will be overhauled and repaired and the existing ride tower will be demolished with a new tower featuring a launch platform at 12.5m will be constructed. Five new flumes will also be built and supplemented with audio visual special effects systems. Having welcomed more than 10 million visitors since its opening in 1989 the new iconic fume rides will ensure the longevity and continued success of Coral Reef Waterworld for many years to come.

UK ,

The Le Tour Way development in York provides large and spacious sustainable homes split 50/50 for council houses and homes for sale on the private market. We  designed the properties in response to feedback from residents on previous schemes, and all of the homes are built to ‘Lifetime Homes’ standards, which allows residents to stay in their homes longer and make adaptations at lower cost. Low water fittings and appliances, as well as rainwater collection for irrigation and flushing of WCs, help to minimise water use. Each home and apartment has individual facilities for recycling. As a result of the integrated design approach, the properties are inexpensive to run whilst minimising the impact on the environment. The design of the development strived to achieve ‘Code for Sustainable Homes Level 4’, meaning energy use was minimised through passive design before incorporating low and zero carbon technologies.   We provided multidiscipline services for the development, including architecture, structural, mechanical and electrical engineering, landscaping, masterplanning, project management and code for sustainable homes assessment.

UK ,

The first speculative office to be built in Bristol since the recession, this flexible BREEAM ‘Excellent’ Grade-A office development within Bristol’s Enterprise zone forms part of a wider masterplan project that links to Temple Meads, Avon Street and the rest of the waterfront. Our design includes a highly efficient core and limited internal columns, allowing each of the six floors regular, flexible floorplates. This gives businesses the freedom to customise their space. The design was conceived as a series of interlocking geometric forms, which creatively reflects the flexible internal office space. The striking curtain wall façade, designed to reflect the interior’s flexibility, offers panoramic views across Bristol whilst capitalising on natural light. Besides the office space, the development has retail and restaurant accommodation on the ground floor. Innovative use of sheet piling as part of the load bearing structure also allows basement parking beneath the level of the floating harbour.

UK ,

We are currently working on a portfolio of projects, including a new £22m landmark building to provide specialist facilities for two of the university’s internationally renowned facilities – the Faculty of Media and Communication and the Faculty of Science and Technology. The project, which we won through a design competition, is known as the Poole Gateway Fusion Building and will form a new visual gateway to the University’s Talbot Campus and its parkland setting. The Gateway Building will house state of the art facilities on a series of tiered floors, including many multimedia areas, each with acoustically and visually sensitive spaces. These facilities include: TV and film studios, audio editing, media production spaces, green screen and motion capture suites, and animation studios. We are also leading the design of a £40m academic building, which will provide a new home for the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences, as well as wider services to support the implementation of the University’s development masterplan. This includes: space planning of existing buildings, landscaping, infrastructure (road and transport interchanges), and facilities management overview.

UK ,

Plymouth History Centre will transform the city’s current museum, art gallery, library and adjacent church into a cutting-edge, interactive history centre three times its existing size. Scheduled to open in 2020 – in time for the 400th anniversary celebrations of the Mayflower ship setting sail from Plymouth to America – the Plymouth History Centre will provide a new home for the city's fascinating and vast historic collections. Our designs feature a cantilevered 'floating' box above the heart of the Centre. This contains the museum’s historic archive, clad externally in four finishes of panel – from reflective to photo-chromatic finish – subtly mixed and graded over the elevations to represent pages telling the many stories the archive holds. Working with exhibition designers, we’re converting the existing buildings into 3,500sqm of interactive and fun exhibition spaces, as well as large-scale permanent galleries and spaces for local and national touring exhibitions. Urban designers, landscape architects and highway engineers are also designing a new pedestrianised public piazza with space for events and street entertainment and high quality food outlets.

UK ,




GLASS visually depicts logic relationships within equipment, systems, infrastructure or organisations, and is immensely valuable in planning and safety analysis, incident management and training.


Ready to dig  

Atkins is the UK’s leading provider of utility reports. We also provide a wide range of utility management services across the lifecycle of a project.


For more information on our work and experience in this sector please contact:


D'Yon Peoples 
Communications manager, building design
United Kingdom
Tel:  +44 1454 66 2026
Email: D'

Middle East

Ben Thompson
Head of communications
United Arab Emirates
Tel: +971 4 405 9193

Asia Pacific

Peter Ridley
Senior design director
Tel: +86 10 5965 1166


In this section you can find technical papers and thought leadership articles produced by Atkins for the buildings sector.

Title Format Size
The structural design of Almas Tower, Dubai, UAE pdf 304KB
Concrete structures using fabric formwork pdf 3.5MB

In this section you can find technical papers and thought leadership articles produced by Atkins for the buildings sector.

Title Format Size
Feeling the heat pdf 240KB
Tall tales in Sofia pdf 128KB
Eastern star pdf 160KB
Force of nature pdf 206KB
Growing up pdf 304KB
The spark of change pdf 448KB
Saving for the future pdf 448KB
Whyscrapers? pdf 384KB
The great green build? pdf 480KB


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