Aurora, Finzels Reach, Bristol

Our design of an exemplary new 95,000 sq ft Grade A office building in central Bristol was pivotal to it being the first building outside London to achieve a rating of BREEAM Outstanding.


Hydrock has been advising developer Cubex for several years on their Finzels Reach regeneration scheme in the heart of Bristol city centre overlooking the Floating Harbour.

The 4.7 acre scheme, funded by Palmer Capital, includes over 400 stunning PRS apartments, a Premier Inn and Aurora, a 95,000 sq ft Grade A office building. In 2019 it was selected by Channel 4 as the base for its new Creative Hub.

Hydrock has delivered the building services design and the civil and structural engineering design on Aurora. Our engineering design focussed on occupant comfort, energy efficiency and low carbon consumption.

The result is a space that is efficient, offers maximum natural daylight and promotes health, wellbeing and productivity amongst users. It’s an approach that has enabled Aurora to secure a BREEAM Outstanding rating, just one of six such-rated buildings in the UK and the only one outside London.

We have achieved this predominantly through passive means. Conventional heating/cooling systems are used but the demand placed on them is minimal due to our design. Our approach included façade optimisation and the repositioning of the building’s core to maximise daylight and reduce reliance on artificial lighting.

The design will influence user behaviour with prominent stairs to encourage walking to lower floors, storage for 112 bicycles, and rapid electric car charging points.

In addition, our engineers and transportation specialists have supported Cubex with other aspects of the overall Finzels Reach development, including the Premier Inn and the PRS development. The latter provides a mix of affordable studio, one and two bedroom apartments specifically designed as long term rental homes and the development includes communal facilities such as a roof top terrace.

With the wider project team, our work ensures the design of the development architecturally ties in with the surrounding buildings and delivers Cubex’s vision for a vibrant mixed-use development that links to the site’s medieval history with pedestrianised, narrow cobbled streets.

In 2019, Aurora at Finzels Reach won Commercial Development of the Year at the Bristol Property Awards.

For over 20 years Hydrock has delivered award-winning engineering projects across a wide variety of sectors. Contact us today to find out how we can help your business.