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LPS 2024


Sustainable Estate

20 Nov 2024
Stage 1

Estate Rationalisation and Decarbonisation: Maximising Value and Student Experience
Lorna Denholm & Robin Stewart, NORR

Optimisation of University Estates is a key challenge. Critical evaluation is required of the current estate and appraising the existing in the context of Net Zero Carbon targets, the future of learning, teaching, social interaction and research. Here are two examples, for different clients with common themes, designed by NORR. The Royal Veterinary College Student Learning Centre Hawkshead rationalises several disparate buildings to create a unifying focal point at the heart of the campus. Meanwhile, the Stephenson Building at Newcastle University has transformed an existing 1950s building into an outward facing and collaborative Hub for Engineering, centred around collaboration and a vibrant atrium space. 

Creating the Springboard for College Development
Helen Groves, AtkinsRéalis

At the end of 2022, the Scottish Funding Council published the overarching plan for the College Infrastructure Strategy: the approach to delivering Scotland’s College infrastructure investment plan.

This strategy describes the SFC’s approach to determine future investment in Scotland’s college estate and other college infrastructure.

Increasing use of new technology and digitalisation has transformed how education and training are delivered to students as well as the implications for staff and expectations of students and to ensure that the college estate is fit for purpose. The pandemic has accelerated many trends in tertiary education including access to services and learning online which have profound implications for infrastructure and future plans and developments for courses that require attendance in person, are delivered on a hybrid basis or fully online.

The future shape and size of college infrastructure will reflect the new requirements and expectations of students rather than the historical decisions and assumptions around physical and virtual infrastructure requirements to accommodate all users.

In order to deliver this, the SFC must first establish the baseline for each College to determine the function and performance of the entirety of the college estate as it currently exists, considering the continuing interaction between physical infrastructure, digital and net zero. In April 2024, AtkinsRéalis were appointed to determine this baseline which is critical to the development of the Infrastructure Investment Plan.

In this presentation, AtkinsRéalis (with the SFC and Colleges if possible) will showcase the work carried out so far, and the future direction of the plan, to demonstrate the Baseline that is being put in place for the college estate.

Elaine Cook, Depute Chief Executive - West Lothian Council
Lorna Denholm, Director - NORR Consultants Limited
Robin Stewart, Director - NORR
Helen Groves, Architect Director - Education Sector Lead - AtkinsRéalis
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