University’s new £18.2m science teaching facility set for summer opening

A new £18.2m science teaching block at the University of Huddersfield is on schedule for completion by July.

The new science block, which will be first used by students from September, has four storeys and facilities that include “super labs” capable of accommodating up to 120 undergraduates simultaneously carrying out practical work.

Biology, chemistry, forensics, geography and optometry are the main subject areas. There will also be a special lab for use by A-level and BTEC students at colleges and sixth forms around the region.

Work has also begun on landscaping the surroundings, including new paved areas, greenery and a specially-designed hydraulic lift that will ensure full accessibility for all.

The landscaping project is divided into four phases and has been timed for the spring and early summer so that teaching and exams are not affected by the closures and diversions.

The landscaping is being carried out by contractors BAM, and was designed by ADP Architecture. It includes a new amphitheatre-like courtyard area, with broad steps leading to the Joseph Priestley Building and the science block.

For wheelchair users and others with mobility issues, the 1.4 metre height gain will be negotiated by an enclosed lift.

The front entrance to the Joseph Priestley Building will be reopened in time for the July graduation ceremonies, said Paul Turner, who is project manager for campus development in the University’s Estates and Facilities department.

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