Lancaster University

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New Deal For Eco-Friendly Residences

08/02/2007 15:49:21

Principal of County College Prof David Smith and the Principal of Grizedale College the Rev Hugh Pollock
Principal of County College Prof David Smith and the Principal of Grizedale College Father Hugh Pollock

A new financial deal has been struck between Lancaster University, the University’s partners UPP and the bank Dexia, which will result in the building of eco-friendly student residences and a premium to the University which will be spent on more improved facilities for students.

Three phases of building on campus has already created 3385 new rooms. The latest phase will result in the building and refurbishment of a further 963 rooms on campus to a design which incorporates eco-friendly principles and offers students a different design choice from other residences on campus.

The entire residences project has also been refinanced which brings a number of benefits for the University and the project. One of these benefits is a cash payment of £5m to the University in 2007. This is to be ploughed back into projects that benefit students and the community, for example new sports facilities. The refinancing also ensures that the accommodation is maintained to a high quality throughout its lifetime and underpins the long-term sustainability of the project.

SU President Sooz Palmer and Vice Chancellor Prof Paul Wellings
SU President Sooz Palmer and Vice Chancellor Prof Paul Wellings

All of the rooms built on campus as part of the residences project offer students high quality accommodation at competitive rents. The University is able to offer students in the new phase 4 accommodation even lower rents, due to careful attention to design, servicing and energy saving.

Phase 4 includes timber framed townhouses and flats which will be constructed in a low waste and energy efficient process. An attractive plaza will also be built.

Timber from sustainable managed forests will be used in the construction and the buildings will be highly insulated to use less energy to heat. The scheme also includes solar thermal panels on the roofs of the blocks of flats to heat water.

To create a healthy internal environment, the buildings have a smart ventilation system with heat recovery which ensures a continuous supply of fresh air into the buildings and helps to maintain optimum humidity levels. Products such as paints, coatings and preservatives have been kept to a minimum or replaced with low toxic alternatives.

When phase 4 is complete in 2008, a total of 4348 new and refurbished rooms will have been built on the University’s campus, making it the largest single university accommodation project in the country.

Work for 323 new rooms for County started on 12 Mar 07 and finishes in Dec 07 (for occupation from Jan 08).

County Main refurbishment of 187 rooms starts in Jan 08 and finishes in Sep 08.

The building of 453 new rooms for Grizedale will start on 14 May 07 and will finish in June 08 (Occupation from academic year 08/09).

The first three phases of the residences programme have resulted in 3385 new rooms.