The University of Central Lancashire’s (UCLan) Engineering Innovation Centre (EIC) has reached another key stage in its construction as the first of pane of glass has been installed.
Main contractor BAM Construction will now place 652 panes of glass into the EIC over the next two months. Each of the specially designed glass panes weighs 250kg and measures four square metres, meaning the EIC will hold well over an acre of external glazing.
The glass has also been given a specialist reflective coating designed to ensure the building doesn’t become too hot.
Michael Ahern, Chief Operating Officer at UCLan, said:
These types of milestones are really important stages in the progress of a building that is not only an asset to the University but also to the region and its economy.
When it’s completed in early 2019, it will help to attract talented people to the area who will then go on to become engineers of the future. However, in addition to the EIC being a state-of-the art place for learning, it’ll act as a catalyst for the two-way transfer and enhancement of knowledge, research and innovation between the University and industry.
BAM Project Manager Simon Atkinson said:
This is a significant milestone in the EIC project. Once the glass is fitted, it means the building will then be weather tight and we can really start to ramp up the work we are doing on the inside of the EIC.
Designed by internationally renowned architects, SimpsonHaugh, the EIC is anticipated to produce an increase of 500 locally trained graduates per year in areas including aerospace, mechanical and energy technologies and engineering.
The integrated teaching and research space will deliver a range of key objectives, including ensuring that local skills reflect social and economic needs and increasing the number of females in engineering careers.
Identified as a signature project within Lancashire’s Strategic Economic Plan, the EIC has secured £10.5 million via the Lancashire Enterprise Partnerships’ Growth Deal with the Government. The new facility has also received £5.8 million from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and £5 million from HEFCE’s STEM Capital Fund.