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First look at new £30m building at university campus in Norwich

PUBLISHED: 14:29 24 February 2018 | UPDATED: 10:12 28 February 2018

An artist impression of how the new building at the University of East Anglia will look. Picture: University of East Anglia

An artist impression of how the new building at the University of East Anglia will look. Picture: University of East Anglia

Archant

Work is under way on a multimillion pound building for science subjects at a Norwich university.

An artist impression of how the new building at the University of East Anglia will look. Picture: University of East AngliaAn artist impression of how the new building at the University of East Anglia will look. Picture: University of East Anglia

The four-storey building at the University of East Anglia will be opened next September, and will cater for students in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.

The budget for the project is £30m, with one floor made up of high-spec teaching space and the other three home to laboratory areas.

Neil Wilson, the university’s senior estates project manager, said it would be a place for students from a variety of subjects to mix.

“The idea is that they are interchangeable, and you can have mixed faculties and swap around between those subjects,” he said.

“You don’t have separate biology labs and chemistry labs, you can mix them.”

Planning documents say it will “foster a spirit of discovery” in the university, and a “community of science students”, leading to a “cross-pollination of ideas”.

The new site - currently dubbed Building 60 until a new name is announced - won’t see any new courses created, but will instead see students being taught in other areas of campus relocated.

The ground floor will accommodate teaching space for 500 students, with a mix of teaching and social space to be included.

It is likely the building will be used for parents and prospective students on open days.

Building 60 is on Chancellors Drive, near the Thomas Paine Study Centre, Elizabeth Fry Hub and Julian Study Centre, which is at one end of campus.

Mr Wilson said it would draw students and staff to the area, and added: “It means some will move away from the teaching wall, which allows the research to be focused in one position.”

He said the project, led by construction form RG Carter, had been two years in the making, and would contain a mini-square, similar to the well-known one at the heart of UEA’s campus.

It comes amid a time of growth for the university, and after the completion of £30m student accommodation blocks.

The university has said Building 60 fits into its 2030 vision for UEA, which includes a £300m investment in its site.

Do you have an education story for us? Email lauren.cope@archant.co.uk

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