Building the Future

Building the future will shape the development of the British Library’s campus in St Pancras, London – one of the great public buildings of the last century

Published date:

About the project

Building the Future is a key part of the British Library's Living Knowledge vision to become the most open, creative and innovative institution of its kind by 2023. In late 2015, the Library began a Competitive Dialogue procurement to find a development partner to build on the 2.8 acre site at the northern end of its St Pancras site. The objectives of this development include:

  • more exhibition spaces, increasing public access to the Library's vast world-class collections
  • new facilities for learners of all ages, with expanded programmes for schools, colleges, families, adult learners and local communities
  • improved public areas and accessibility, with more places to sit and study
  • an enhanced offering for business users, building on the success of the Library's Business & IP Centre
  • a new northern entrance close to the Francis Crick Institute and the main St Pancras Station concourse
  • a permanent home for the Alan Turing Institute, the UK national centre for data science and artificial intelligence
  • flexible accommodation for third-party companies, institutions and research organisations seeking to work at the heart of the Knowledge Quarter.

As well as the new development, the project has also been working on making improvements to the current St Pancras building, and has refurbished the Library’s Knowledge Centre, expanded our catering and retail offer, and delivered new Membership spaces.

Latest news

In April 2017, the Library selected a joint venture led by Stanhope plc, working with architects Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners (RSHP), as its preferred partner to develop a 2.8 acre site at the northern end of its estate.This followed a Competitive Dialogue procurement.

The Library and Stanhope (and its consortium) are currently working together to form a Development Agreement which would confirm Stanhope as the Library’s development partner. This should be completed over the summer of 2018.

Next steps

Once a Development Agreement is completed, Stanhope and the Library will be engaging fully with the local community, Camden Council, the Greater London Authority and other stakeholders in the design of the new development.