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Thermo Fisher Scientific is the world leader in serving science, delivering an unrivalled combination of innovative technologies, purchasing convenience and pharmaceutical services, with a mission to empower its customers to make the world a healthier, cleaner and safer place.

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Thermo Fisher Scientific


Workplace Consultancy, Office Design, Laboratory Design, Construction


24,000 Sq ft


Swindon, UK

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The brief

In an effort to strengthen their operational output in the battle against COVID-19 – via its industry-leading pharmaceutical services brand, Patheon – and prepare the organisation for future growth, Thermo Fisher Scientific announced it would be expanding its footprint in North America and Europe to accelerate innovation and enhance productivity for its customers.

The Swindon site expansion emphasises the demand for steriles globally and will support fast-tracked development of vaccines and treatments to patients - whether it be for COVID-19 or other serious diseases. Thermo Fisher Scientific continue to play a key role in the global response to COVID-19, with its Swindon site securing investment from Pfizer, becoming a production hub for the worldwide supply of the Pfizer, BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.

The solution

Given the extensive technology transfer process, design, on-site development, equipment installation and regulatory approvals needed for their Swindon site, Area were well placed with our end-to-end laboratory design and construction offering to add real value to this project. With a reputation of innovation and excellence, and with a landmark deal bringing over 200 new jobs to the local area, we were thrilled to partner with Thermo Fisher Scientific to not only support their ongoing change process, but also to design and build an environment that will help to further strengthen their position as industry leaders, creating a space that will foster innovation and provide a workplace that will attract and retain the best talent.

The Swindon expansion will transform the existing 300,000 sq ft site into a new full-scale commercial manufacturing facility that can provide short and long-term capacity for the pandemic and other commercial manufacturing projects. The expansion includes an 8,000 sq ft Chemistry laboratory consisting of chemistry, in-process, finished product, QC technical services and raw materials testing facilities, designed to provide Good Manufacturing Process(GMP) drug substance, in-process and drug product release analysis, stability testing, raw material release testing and chemical environmental monitoring capabilities.

The expansion of their 7,000 sq ft Microbiology laboratory provides services for the microbiological testing of incoming raw materials, in-process, as well as final product testing relating to both batch disposition and ongoing stability program support and analysis, including endotoxin, bioburden and growth promotion.

A 2,500 sq ft changing room facility has been completely refurbished, designed to improve cGMP compliance, with personal lockers and storage, gowning rooms and ablution amenities. As Thermo Fisher Scientific continue to invest in expertise across its network, this new facility will cater for future growth and will ensure efficient entry of specialist, supervisory and control personnel.

With a variety of technical functions, safety regulations, and quality standards to meet, Area left no stone unturned to understand all the relevant measures, designing a laboratory that is not only functional but highly stimulating.

Robert Dorling
Project Manager, Pharmaceutical Services, Thermo Fisher Scientific
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Project insight

With a mission to accelerate innovation and enhance productivity for its customers and people, investments in capacity and technology extend beyond the laboratory environment; with a new 6,000 sq ft activity-based-working office environment, designed to improve collaboration between senior managers and support services. The new open-plan workspace has variety of work points, meeting rooms, soft seating options, booths and focus areas – giving their people the choice and flexibility to do their best work. We facilitated employee engagement exercises, occupancy studies, employee surveys, stakeholder workshops and feasibility investigations to understand the challenges and reveal any pain points with existing ways of working, to inform a data-led concept with wellbeing at the core.

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