Modular visitor centres, retail & hospitality units

Be it a sustainable café, an upmarket restaurant, workshop or retail space, or welfare facilities, our ARC visitor centres provide a quality welcoming environment all year round, and can be installed with minimum disruption to your normal services. 

Green Unit and its sister museum-design company SolidArt have a long tradition of working with the museum and heritage sector. We understand the cost, aesthetic, community and environmental factors that contribute to a successful funding bid.

Beautiful, low-rise, green roofed visitor centres

Places of great beauty deserve sensitively designed buildings. From the outside, the ARC building’s curves blend into the natural environment, while from the inside expansive windows afford stunning views. The modular construction lets you choose your own layout, starting as small as you need to, and extending the building to suit your own timeframes. Our catalogue of interior decor options also gives you the freedom to choose a style that suits your needs. 

To discuss your project, call 01865 803101.

Interpretation and display design

Our sister company Solid Art has undertaken interpretation projects for numerous museums and visitor attractions including outdoor trusts and churches. Let us know if we can help.

Bespoke furniture

Our in-house cabinet makers can also design and make bespoke furniture including reception desks that reflect the uniqueness of your property or collection.

Download the Green Unit brochure or download our price guide.

To enquire about an eco-friendly, modular visitor centre or retail unit, please fill out this form.

Alternatively explore our FAQs or view our videos on our YouTube channel.


  • Ultra-low carbon – attractive to funders
  • Quick and inexpensive to erect – minimal disruption to normal services 
  • Low running costs – minimum heating requirement due to super insulation and air heat exchanger
  • Bespoke modular sections let you create the perfect building for your needs
  • Easy to extend – simply add new modules
  • Long lifetime – engineered to offer exceptionally robust building performance
  • Year-round comfort – warm in winter, cool in summer and healthy air all year round, with climate control, air heat exchanger, triple glazing and air-filtering system
  • Ventilation system offers pollen-free fresh air and helps avoid condensation 
  • Planning friendly – classified as a relocatable temporary structure
  • Large end windows provide plenty of natural light and create beautiful views 
  • Soundproofed walls for comfort and privacy
  • Off-grid renewable energy system available as an upgrade
  • Bespoke furniture option – craftsman-built in the UK
  • Interpretation design option – we can help tell your visitors the whole story through unique display panels and cabinets, created by our professional museum interpretation associates



Green Unit buildings

Traditional buildings

Planning permission

Classed as permanent or temporary where permanent planning consent is impossible

Full planning consent usually required for permanent buildings

Foundation type

Lightweight building on helical piles requires minimal ground preparation and disruption

Soil removal, engineering and concrete pour usually costly, time consuming and disruptive

Speed of installation

Pre-made, pre plumbed, buildings are quick to install with no cost escalation

Lengthy preparation, first , second and finish fixing stages with cost escalation risk

Energy performance

Highly insulated, climate controlled with air heat exchanger and triple glazing

At risk of energy loss by air leakage and cold-bridging through walls and widows


Timber construction, sheep’s wool and green roof produce negative carbon footprint

Materials and production processes require heat energy, heavy transport, produce CO2

Design configuration and reconfiguration

Modular design allows unique individual configuration and low-cost reconfiguration choices

Bespoke design and reconfiguration time-consuming and costly


Configuration options

Length options

• Pop-up café, boutique shop or ticket kiosk for up to 6 adults
• Retail, café or visitor reception for up to 12 adults
• Retail, café, reception or visitor centre for up to 24 adults
• Retail, café and visitor reception for up to 42 adults

Entry door options

• French doors to side of building
• French doors to front of building
• French doors to rear of building
• Single door to rear of building
• Combination of end and side doors

Window options

• Front/rear feature window
• Roof window
• Wall window
• Mansard window (combined roof and wall windows)

Room options

• Meeting room
• Kitchen
• WC and disabled
• Store room

Layout options

• Straight
• T-shaped
• Double barrelled
• H-shaped
• Complex of multiple buildings

Furniture options

• Built-in sideboard units
• Built-in desks and benches
• Built-in storage systems
• AV and lighting system options

External finishes

• Lime render
• Red cedar cladding 
• Decking in a range of dimensions

Internal finishes

• Varnished or painted pine walls
• Fabric-covered dividing walls
• Flooring in rustic oak, white oak, dark walnut, tile, vinyl or carpet
• Solid panel door in oiled oak or limed oak
• Frosted or clear glass panelled door

Price Guide