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26May94 UK: SHELL LAB FOR £70M FACELIFT.

A £70 million investment programme to reshape one of Britain's top industrial laboratories has been announced by Royal Dutch/Shell.The programme will upgrade, modernise and re-shape facilities at the Thornton Research Centre, which is based on a 22 ha site in Cheshire.The company has applied for detailed planning permission for a new building involving five laboratories with common facilities and support services.Work on the two-phase project will start this summer, with the first phase being ready by the end of next year, the company confirmed, although no tender list has yet been drawn up or bids invited.Also planned during the 10-year redevelopment programme is a new product development and testing centre and a visitor centre. A perimeter road will also be provided.The new buildings will replace many of the existing single-storey structures which are showing their age, and will be designed to be adaptable for a variety of uses. CONSTRUCTION NEWS