Bouygues UK will build the centre, which is due to open in 2027. Part of the New Hospital Programme, it will ‘harness the expertise of the partners under one roof to enable closer collaborative working between clinicians and researchers’.
Guests at the event included Lord Markham CBE, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Health and Social Care, key staff involved in the development and design, NHS leaders, and leadership donors supporting the project. Dr Martin Kuper, Moorfields Eye Hospital CEO, said: “We have been looking forward to this breaking ground event for a long time. Thank you to everyone who has worked so hard to get us to this stage. This centre will support our global reputation for excellence, and help us deliver outstanding care for all our patients.”
Health Minister, Lord Markham said: “It was an honour to attend the breaking ground event to mark the start of construction to build Oriel, part of the biggest hospital building in a generation. We continue to work closely with the NHS to improve services, and Oriel is part of our commitment to build 40 new hospitals by 2030, now expected to be backed by over £20 billion of investment.”
The Oriel site was previously owned by Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust. In February 2023, Moorfields acquired it through an NHS-to-NHS transaction, and a £300 million contract was awarded to Bouygues UK to build Oriel. Demolition of six buildings on the site started in late February, and construction of the 10-storey, 47,000 m2 centre has now begun. The new facility will be located in the heart of the Knowledge Quarter, ‘an internationally renowned science and innovation hub’.