Cowan Court is a student residence on Churchill College Campus, originally founded in 1960 as a memorial to former British prime minister Sir Winston Churchill.
Designed by 6a architects, Cowan Court brings a contemporary design to the original brutalist style.
Max Fordham designed an ambitious environmental strategy for the new building; minimal mechanical ventilation was installed within the student rooms with large insulated panel openings providing the necessary purge and cooling passive ventilation. This reduced the amount of embodied and consumed energy.
Heating and hot water distribution was achieved with a self balancing arrangement and minimal lateral pipework runs, minimising the overall heat loss through the pipework. Solar generated electricity and rainwater collection reduce the energy requirements further.
The original buildings had limited thermal insulation inherent in the original design. Cowan court was built with a mix of highly insulated wall elements and high performance double and triple glazed windows, including solar controlled glazing that simultaneously allowed high levels of daylight through to all areas.