Project finance to be arranged by contractor in first-of-its-kind development for NHS

John Laing has been selected to build a £120m scheme at Cambridge’s renowned biomedical campus.

The Forum project, designed by NBBJ, will bring together under one roof a post-graduate medical education centre, a 75-bed private hospital, a 200-room hotel and a 550-seat conference centre.

Client Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (CUH) hopes the development will “encourage interaction” between academics and CUH staff, helping to bolster Cambridge’s reputation as a venue for biomedical conferences, training and specialist healthcare and bringing in income for NHS services.

In the first major project of its kind in the NHS, CUH and John Laing will form a joint venture to develop the new building with funding “arranged entirely by John Laing”.

Peter Ward, director of healthcare projects at John Laing, said: “We’re very excited to be working with CUH on this important project. John Laing is keen to invest sustainably in good quality public infrastructure, and the Forum is a great example because it will provide a social hub for the biomedical campus, give Cambridge a centre for postgraduate medical education that reflects the standards of its teaching, and generate substantial income for NHS care.”

It is planned that the private hospital will be run by Ramsay Health Care UK and the postgraduate medical education centre will be managed by CUH.

CUH said that it will receive an annual income and a share of the profits over the life of the project with all of this income supporting the delivery of patient care at Addenbrooke’s and the Rosie hospitals.

The development is expected to create over 300 construction jobs.

Commercial close is anticipated this summer with construction work planned to start in spring 2014 with the facility opening in summer 2016.