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New engineering facility planned for University of Plymouth

The University of Plymouth has been granted permission to create an iconic new facility that will inspire and educate the next generation of engineers and designers.

The Babbage building, on the western edge of the University’s main campus, will be enlarged and enhanced to provide an innovative and sustainable new home for the School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics and additional space for the School of Art, Design and Architecture.

Designed by internationally award-winning architectural practice Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, it has received conditional planning approval from Plymouth City Council. 

The facility will include a dedicated new-build component and refurbishment of the 1970s Babbage Building, creating more than 10,000m² of research and teaching space.

Professor Judith Petts CBE, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Plymouth, said: “This is a landmark decision for a project that will have a number of significant benefits for the University and wider community.

“Over the past decade and more, we have invested in our estate and created outstanding research and teaching facilities in the arts and health, ocean science and sustainability. This project will enable us to build on our existing expertise in engineering and design, and provide staff and students with a facility that matches their aspirations and enables them to push the boundaries in addressing real-world challenges.” 

Colin Cobb, Associate at Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, said: “Our proposals for the engineering and design facility will provide state-of-the-art new facilities through the sustainable re-use of existing infrastructure. Our plans take the building back to the original concrete frame – a characterful waffle-slab construction – that will be revealed by stripping out suspended ceilings and overhead services to create open and well-lit spaces to promote creativity, cross-disciplinary collaboration and wellbeing.”

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