CONSTRUCTION has begun on the National College for High Speed Rail, which is on track to open to students in Doncaster in September 2017.
Funding for the Yorkshire campus, at the town’s Lakeside area, and a second site in Birmingham, was approved by the Government in the autumn spending review.
Doncaster Council won the competition to host one of the sites in 2014. It will train the next generation of engineers and specialists needed to build HS2 and future infrastructure projects.
Transport minister Robert Goodwill was at the ground-breaking ceremony on Monday.
He said: “This landmark moment means we are one step closer to seeing students walk through the doors of the College in 2017, learning the cutting-edge skills we need to deliver HS2 and world-beating rail infrastructure.
“This shows the transformational effect that HS2 is already having on our country - boosting skills, generating jobs and supporting economic growth – before spades are in the ground next year.”
Chair of the Corporate Board for the National College for High Speed Rail, Terry Morgan, said would be a “catalyst for growth” in both Doncaster and Birmingham, that will bring new investment and provide highly skilled jobs for local people.
Mayor of Doncaster, Ros Jones, said: “One of my priorities is to bring more highly-skilled jobs to the borough which local people are able to benefit from, and the College will play a central role in delivering these kind of opportunities. “Rail is in our blood in Doncaster, and we have a proven track record of delivering world-class engineering and infrastructure projects that makes us the perfect location for the College.”
The College will be open to a wide range of students including new entrants, existing workforce, those already studying for a foundation degree in rail engineering and others.
HS2 will support up to 100,000 jobs nationwide, create around 25,000 jobs during construction of Phases One and Two and create 2,000 apprenticeships.