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Approved: New Natural History Museum Center

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The Wokingham Borough Council has approved the construction of a state-of-the-art research and storage facility for London’s famed Natural History Museum (NHM), marking a significant development.

It is planned to be built at the Thames Valley Science Park in Reading and will house an astounding 28 million specimens. The project is expected to start early in the upcoming year and has generated a lot of interest.

The approved plans have excited Tim Littlewood, the Executive Director of Science at NHM, who said, “This new site will enable us to secure irreplaceable collections in a purpose-built facility.”

This project, which has received a significant £201 million funding commitment from the government, demonstrates a dedication to strengthening scientific infrastructure. The 25,000 square meter (about 270,000 square foot) structure is expected to be finished by 2027, and operations are scheduled to start in 2031.

The building, which has state-of-the-art labs and a special workplace for museum scientists, is expected to transform research capacities. It is significant to the scientific community because it will enable the largest-ever movement of natural history specimens worldwide.

Additionally, the relocation will free up important gallery space, resulting in a 16% increase at the museum’s current South Kensington location.

Collections from mammals to petrified specimens and molecular collections will be housed at the new center. To further support research efforts, it will feature cutting-edge amenities like molecular biology labs, imaging and analysis centers, and conservation facilities.

Mr. Littlewood stated, “The museum’s new facility will improve collections access, physically and digitally, to the scientific community,” emphasizing the center’s crucial role in fostering scientific collaboration.

NHM is working closely with the University of Reading to integrate research findings into practical initiatives that solve urgent environmental concerns in an effort to promote innovation.

A new era of scientific discovery and preservation at the forefront of natural history study is being heralded by the start of this ground-breaking project, which stakeholders are eagerly anticipating.

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