Building a World Changing Campus

Published: 8 June 2015

What is Estates and Buildings Chief, Ann Allen, saying about our progress towards a World Changing Campus? Read the first of her regular updates here...

This is the first in a series of monthly updates from Ann Allen, the University's Director of Estates and Buildings, aimed at briefing you on the progress being made towards creating a World Changing Campus.

Campus e-News in February was able to confirm that the University Court had approved a ten year capital plan which would see more than £750m of investment in the estate.

Since this announcement the Estates and Buildings team has been extremely busy putting everything in place to get the projects started. This has meant that there has been little communication from the team, however there has been a lot going on!

Campus Vision 300 artist's impressionThe capital plan approved £157m of spend (£15.7m per annum) over the next ten years to maintain the existing estate and to ensure that the small but significant projects continue.  This will include projects as varied as repairs to the Bell Tower on the Gilbert Scott Building, refurbishment of the library, the annual £1.7m programme of improvement to lecture theatres and teaching labs and also the office moves that are constantly happening.

Over the summer, four lecture theatres and teaching labs will be refurbished; the scaffolding for the Bell Tower will go up as that works starts and the refurbishment of levels 1 and 2 of the library will be initiated.

In addition, the capital plan reflected that the University is already committed to spend £150m on existing projects including investment in the South Glasgow University Hospital; the planning application for the new Imaging Centre of Excellence (ICE) has also recently been submitted.


Finally the capital plan identified £450m of investment in new buildings and major refurbishments. The Learning and Teaching Hub is part of this investment and work continues in developing the proposals for this key building.

Frank Coton, Vice-Principal for Learning and Teaching, is the project Sponsor and is leading a team of University staff and students who are developing this project. They are looking at the building design but also looking at how the building will run and they are developing a Hub that will reflect the student attributes and the way that learning and teaching is changing.

A design team for the building was appointed last month and HLM architects will lead this team; early designs should be available in the next few months. If you want to find out more about HLM’s experience in HE design then go to their website at HLM Architects

Developments in the ten year plan: 2015 – 2025
Teaching & Learning Hub (all phases) - Chair: Dorothy Welch   Sponsor: Frank Coton
Research Hub - Chair: Neal Juster   Sponsor: Jon Cooper
Data Centre attached to the Research Hub
New building collocating Institute of Health and Wellbeing & CoSS - Chair: Robert Fraser   Sponsor: Anne Anderson
Improvements to Gilbert Scott Building to support Adam Smith Business School - Chair: Jim Conroy   Sponsor: Anne Anderson
College of Arts co-location - Chair: David Newall Sponsor: Robbie O'Maolalaigh
Refurbishment of existing major buildings including Physics and Astronomy, Chemistry and Life Sciences
Clean Animal holding facility
College of Science and Engineering - Chair: Murray Pittock   Sponsor: Muffy Calder
Refurbishment existing facilities for University Services to allow move back to campus
For more information email:

The Research Hub project is led by sponsor Vice-Principal Innovation and Knowledge Exchange, Jon Cooper. The early discussions on the shape and strategic brief are just starting. A company called Hassells Architects have just been engaged to support this work and during the summer there should be opportunities for everyone who is interested to get engaged in the early thinking.  The process to appoint a full design team for this project has just started

In April a series of workshops were held for colleagues engaged in the project to develop the shared facilities for the College of Social Science and the research Institute of Health and Wellbeing. The opportunities that this will bring for collaboration should be significant.

Other projects are also progressing: architects are engaged with the Adam Smith Business School to look at how the Gilbert Scott building can be re-visioned to provide an inspirational and efficient environment for the school. The opportunities for the refurbishment of the Joseph Black Building are being reviewed and plans for College of Science and Engineering are in the very early stages of discussion. The development Board for the co-location of College of Arts is just being formed.

Master Plan

In addition to the individual projects there has been a major exercise undertaken to procure a master planning team and infrastructure advisors. This group will take the campus development framework and develop more detailed designs; again these proposal will be submitted to the City Council for their approval.

We will be keen to hear people’s thoughts and views as our master plan proposals develop and will look to start a full consultation process again in autumn.

As you can see, there is a lot going on. At the moment most of the work is either through Project Development Boards or within the Estates Department, however we are keen to start the consultation process again on the overall master plan and this will resume in the Autumn. As always we want engage as widely as possible with all Staff and students as we get a lot of important ideas from these discussions.

The Department is pretty busy: in addition to the new work we are of course continuing to work on the current programme and everyone will see the progress on projects such as the GUU / Stevenson building on Gibson Street, the district heating scheme and the Glass Building at Garscube. It was also great to see the new Teaching and Learning facility at the South Glasgow University Hospitals reach completion last week ahead of its official opening.

Ann Allen

Director, Estates and Buildings

First published: 8 June 2015

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