Work to begin on new School of Engineering at Lancaster University

Construction of a new Engineering Building is due to start as part of ambitious expansion plans to transform the department into a prestigious School of Engineering.

By Gayle Rouncivell
Tuesday, 1st February 2022, 12:30 pm

The expansion plan with the new building, new facilities and more than 25 new staff will support the growing demand from students and industry alike due to the continued success of the department, which is highly ranked in university league tables.

Prof Peter Atkinson, Executive Dean of the Faculty of Science and Technology, said: “I am delighted to see the start of construction of the new building, as part of an exciting new phase of development for engineering at Lancaster University.

"The greatly expanded School of Engineering will lead world-class research in areas such as digital and additive manufacturing, nuclear, chemical and electronic engineering, enjoy a transformed ability to engage with industry, and offer an exceptional experience to undergraduate and postgraduate students.”

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Prof Claudio Paoloni, Head of Engineering Department, PhD student Jade Li, MEng student Tom Pagen, Vice-Chancellor Prof Andy Schofield, Kevin Sharpe of the John Turner Construction Group, undergraduate Nuna Dumrongthai, university development manager Stuart Foy and Faculty Dean Prof Peter Atkinson.

Situated to the west of the existing RIBA award-winning engineering building, the new-build development will expand the department by a further 2,900 square metres.

This will provide a 3D lecture theatre – the first of its kind on campus – along with specialist laboratories and equipment including a new Distillation Column and a Material Characterisation Laboratory.

In addition to the building, further spaces will be available by upgrading the existing science and technology building to improve PhD study space and academic offices.

Together these improvements will provide top class facilities to further enhance the already excellent reputation of the department and will strengthen strategic partnerships with industry.

Prof Claudio Paoloni, Head of Engineering at Lancaster University, said: “The Engineering Department is projected to become a world leading School of Engineering. This new building is pivotal in this exciting transition by providing new high-quality specialist spaces for engaging teaching and cutting-edge research.

“In line with the university’s sustainability objectives, part of the scheme includes reuse and refurbishment of the existing Science and Technology building for more general and office use, whilst focusing the new build on specialist laboratory, teaching and research spaces.”

The department was awarded the Athena SWAN bronze award in 2018 in recognition of work done to advance gender equality.

John Turner Construction Group have been appointed by the University as Principal Contractor, with a strong relationship and knowledge of the University having worked on the recently completed Management School West Pavilion and Library Extension.

Construction was expected to begin this week, with completion in summer 2023.