University’s Masterplan project coming into focus

An impressive glass exterior has been lifted into the £60m Student Centre, part of the University of Central Lancashire’s (UCLan) flagship Masterplan development.

The highest single span ‘continuous’ curtain walling system in Europe – meaning the outer walls are non-structural – gives an impressive finish to the south elevation of the development at 13.5 metres in height, and nearly 100 metres in length.

Ian Roberts, project manager of contractor Bowmer + Kirkland, said: “This gives the centre a pleasing aesthetic finish and doesn’t require additional fixings between its whole length. The system fits with the overall design, modern, but practical as a world-class facility for many years to come.”

The glazing for the Student Centre in Preston was manufactured at the specialist Charles Henshaw company in Scotland before being transported to site and swung in by crane.

Bowmer + Kirkland has been working throughout the pandemic under restrictions of social distancing measures for all employees to continue progress.

The £200m Masterplan development also includes previously completed buildings of two new student spaces, the Oasis multi-faith centre and the £35m Engineering Innovation Centre on Corporation Street.

Once completed, the development will also create a greener environment on the previous Adelphi roundabout for students, staff and residents to enjoy, with more than 300 new trees being planted and a 50,000-strong bee colony on the roof of the Student Centre.