University of Winchester’s new state-of-the-art building moves step closer
The University of Winchester has been granted planning permission to construct a new building at its West Downs site.
The new building, which will be built on undeveloped land within the West Downs site next to the Grade-II-listed West Downs Centre, will provide first-class teaching and learning facilities and will be home to the University's new computer and digital-related degree programmes.
Professor Joy Carter, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Winchester, said: "Our new building at West Downs represents an important investment for the University and the city. As a successful values-driven higher education institution, we aim to maintain our strong national and global position in the years ahead. Offering an outstanding student experience remains a top priority for us. A key way we do this is by continuously improving the University's campus and ensuring our students and the wider community have access to the best facilities.
"I am also delighted that, as a major employer and a key part of the city, the University will have such a stunning and impressive presence at the main gateway into the city centre from the south-west."
The new building, designed by the award winning Winchester-based Design Engine Architects, will feature new teaching spaces, social learning areas, a law library, 250-seat auditorium, art gallery, courtyard garden, café and food hall.
In addition, pedestrian safety across Romsey Road will be improved by a new signalled pedestrian crossing and the relocation of the vehicular entrance to West Downs, making access to the site and the bus stop easier.
The public footpath, which runs along the eastern side of the site between West Downs and Hillier Garden Centre, will be improved and incorporated into the new landscaping. It will also be overlooked by the new building, improving public security.
Richard Jobson, Director of Design Engine, said: "We are proud to have worked closely with the University over the last ten years. Ultimately we see the West Downs project as the most important building the University has commissioned to date and as such we are passionate in our desire to help the University deliver a landmark scheme on this site."
Construction begins in summer 2017 and will take approximately two years, with completion in autumn 2019.
Images credit: Design Engine Architects