New £40m Leeds University hub gets green light

An artist's impression of the new for the University of Leeds.
An artist's impression of the new for the University of Leeds.
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PLANS for the first phase of a masterplan to overhaul Leeds University have been passed after councillors praised the design of a new £40m innovation and enterprise hub.

Work on the new innovation and enterprise hub on the University of Leeds campus is set to start in the new year after members of Leeds City Council’s city plans panel unanimously passed the proposals.

The 10,000 sq mt building will provide office and laboratory space for technology companies to develop and grow and is expected to create 97 new full-time equivalent jobs, adding to 598 existing jobs which will be based there.

Coun Al Garthwaite (Lab – Headingley), said: “I think this is a terrific building. It has got clean lines, it’s elegant. It makes a real statement and fits in well with its surroundings. It reminds me of the best of European architecture.”

Coun Peter Gruen (Lab – Cross Gates and Whinmoor), said: “It is an excellent scheme.” Plans for an £87m North East Quarter at the university, including the development of an international centre for engineering and physical sciences, are moving forward.

The 161,458 sq ft Bragg Centre, due for completion in autumn 2019, would house the physics and computing departments, bringing them closer to the engineering and chemistry schools.

A pre-application presentation of the proposals was presented to the city plans panel.

Associated Architects drew up plans for the innovation and design hub. A spokesman for the company said: “We are delighted at the panel’s unanimous endorsement of the proposals.

“Our team has worked closely with planning officers to ensure designs meet not only the university’s aspirations but also those of the city.

“Our focus is now firmly on delivering the building to the highest possible design and quality standard.”

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