Parkinson Building

Creating a campus for everyone

A key aim for the University is to have a campus that is accessible for everyone.

The Facilities Directorate has been working hard to improve the accessibility of existing areas of campus, as well as to make equality of access a top consideration in the planning of new buildings.

In light of #DisabilityHistoryMonth we thought that this would be a great opportunity to showcase the accessibility works that have taken place across campus over the past years.

Discovery Way opens up campus

The completion of Nexus on the eastern edge of the University has opened up a new accessible route onto campus. The Discovery Way entrance is located on Woodhouse Lane, and provides a step-free route to the Orange Zone car park and E C Stoner Building, and from there to The Edge, Roger Stevens, Chancellor’s Court and beyond.

Nexus Discovery Way

Chemistry lift completed

The new lift in the School of Chemistry has now been completed, providing an accessible route to lecture theatres A and B.

Accessible water fountain fitted

A bespoke-designed water fountain has been installed on the Precinct. The fountain has two water spouts, one of which is positioned so that it is easily accessible for wheelchair users. Fill up your water bottle there and help with the University’s #2023PlasticFree Pledge!

Campus map updated with new defibrillators

The interactive campus map has been updated to show the locations of new defibrillators which have been fitted at Henry Price, Nexus and in Clothworker’s Court.

Further improvements to external steps on campus

There have been further improvements made to external steps across campus. Handrails have been fitted on the steps under the Roger Stevens Building leading to the Astbury Centre and on the steps leading down to the Edward Boyle Library from the Social Sciences Building. The steps have been lined with yellow paint to further improve campus accessibility.

Edward Boyle Steps

Ensuring digital accessibility for all

In response to new legislation setting a higher expectation for digital accessibility, the University has been taking steps to recognise where accessibility can be improved across our digital estate. An accessibility statement has been published on the University’s corporate website explaining which areas of the estate are not yet fully accessible, and how we plan to improve their accessibility.
The University has also engaged a third-party auditor to test our websites’ compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines. Following on from this the University Communications team is running awareness sessions for relevant staff across the University to explain what is needed to improve our accessibility further.

Makeover for University’s main entrance

A large project to improve the look and general accessibility around the main entrance to the University has now been completed. Previously the area where the Michael Sadler Building meets the side of the Parkinson Building had sloping feathered steps on one side, and uneven ground without a clear pathway on the other. These feathered steps have been removed and replaced with a green area featuring a newly planted semi-mature tree. On the other side, the seating area has been redone with more attractive furniture, improved landscaping and clear accessible routes to allow easy access from Woodhouse Lane onto University Road.

University of Leeds campus entrance

Parkinson Building now accessible for all

The Parkinson Building, our most iconic building on campus, is now more accessible than ever following the completion of work to upgrade the Parkinson steps and handrails and install a lift at the main entrance of the building. For the first time in its history, the University has made it possible for all visitors, students and staff to enter the Parkinson Building together using the main entrance.

Sabiha Patel, Head of Equality and Inclusion, commented: “I am grateful to the University and delighted with this development to Parkinson Building. Full access to our buildings is an essential first step to inclusion. Everyone should now be able to enter the building easily and take advantage of all the opportunities it affords.”

Bragg Tribute

Construction milestone around the corner for the Sir William Henry Bragg Building

As we move ever closer to the completion of the construction of the Sir William Henry Bragg building we spoke to Estates Senior Project Manager David Oldroyd to find out about the next steps for the project.

For additional information about the project why not read the FAQ’s for the Sir William Henry Bragg Building.

When does construction complete?

We’re really pleased to confirm that construction is due to be complete in February 2021, approximately in four months’ time.

That’s not long, what will be happening in the last phase of construction?

Your right, it will be upon us before we know it. At the moment the project Contractor BAM, is focusing on the key aspects which are the ongoing installation of lab furniture, laying of soft floor finishes and the final decorations in addition to completing other smaller aspects of the construction programme. The last four weeks of construction will be commissioning of services only and by Christmas, all physical works involving tradesmen will be complete.

What can we expect following construction?

Following the completion of building construction the next phase is called fit out, hook-up and migration.

This phase involves the practical elements of installing fixtures and fittings and specialist connections inside to enable equipment from the current labs and buildings to be moved over/ migrated into the new building. It is envisaged that this process will take approximately six months. During this time we will also be installing furniture and completing the AV installations in the building.

Sounds great, and when can we expect staff to move into the building?

Our plans for general staff moving into the building will occur after the summer teaching term completes in 2021 but more precise details will follow nearer the time.

In the current climate, the safety of our staff and students remains a priority so we will seek to move staff in when it is effectively safe to do so next year in controlled phases of work.

Where can we find out more about the project?

We post regular updates about the project on the campus development website. You can visit it to see progress photos of the building, both internal and external. We also have an FAQ’s section which covers everything from what happens after construction to specific information relevant to the staff that will be moving into the building.

We are also keen to hear from colleagues who may have additional comments or questions. Please contact us at campusdevelopment@leeds.ac.uk.

Still from the Esther Simpson time-lapse camera of August's progress

The Esther Simpson Building: progress so far

The latest updates from the Esther Simpson Building project

Since the last project update in June there has been major progress at The Esther Simpson Building project on Cloberry Street.

Recent update from BAM Construction:

  • We have completed forming the basement structure and poured all the higher slabs.  We have only the remaining ground floor slab to install on site under the lecture theatre.
  • Now the Upper Floors have been cast we are able to start installing the main roof for the new building.  Materials will be brought in a lifted up using the site crane to allow the works to progress.
  • We have had built 203 pre-cast panels with windows for the envelope of the building.  Some of these weigh up to 8 tonnes and is the reason we have such a large crane on site.  They will be hoisted into position and bolted to the side of the building.
  • The panels are progressing around the building as we continue to enclose the building
  • Works ongoing to form the main roof to the building working from the Southern side (Substation) towards North side (Cloberry Street)
  • The installation of the 3rd floor Curtain Wall which forms a band of glass around the top floor of the building will commence soon.
  • Works will begin to install the plasterboard walls internally.
  • Works are now underway installing PV to the top of Newlyn Building roof.  We are also undertaking works still within the Storm Jameson plantroom.
  • Landscape works will commence on the corner of Woodsley Road & Clarendon Road next to Charles Thackrah Building.

Time-lapse

Brownlee Centre

A trial to use nature to reduce flood risk launches at Leeds Brownlee Triathlon Centre

A trial to use nature to reduce flood risk gets on its marks at Leeds Brownlee Triathlon Centre

A trial is being launched by the Environment Agency and the University of Leeds at the Brownlee Triathlon Centre to look at how nature can be used to help reduce flood risk.

This will be the first urban pilot site set up as part of the Leeds Flood Alleviation Scheme’s natural flood management (NFM) project.

It is being launched at the centre, owned by the University of Leeds, to inspire students and the Leeds community to test how natural solutions such as creating wetlands can be used to help reduce the risk of flooding along the River Aire and in Leeds.

The site will be used to showcase many innovative ways to deliver NFM which will be used for academic research and help to develop practical ways to monitor different techniques and gather evidence on their success.

Five pilot sites have been set up as part of the Leeds Flood Alleviation Scheme using techniques such as woodland creation, wetland scrapes and leaky barriers.

Holly Radcliffe Leeds NFM project manager from the Environment Agency, said:

“We are very grateful to the University of Leeds for working with us to develop a pilot site at the Brownlee Triathlon Centre to trial and test natural flood management.

“The Triathlon Centre is a real asset for students and the local community, and are excited to work further with them to develop suitable designs for the site.  “We hope that visitors will also be able to learn about how effective NFM techniques can be.

“As the country faces a national and global climate emergency, restoring our natural environment is an important component to help reach net zero emissions in the future.

“Natural Flood Management offers potential for climate mitigation, for example, creating wetlands, restoring our uplands and planting trees can help to capture tonnes of carbon from the atmosphere.

James Wright, from grounds and gardens team at The University of Leeds, said:

“We are delighted to be working with the Environment Agency on a natural flood management project at the Brownlee Centre.

“This is a great opportunity to showcase the huge benefits of working with natural process to Leeds Community and academic partners across the university.”

Brownlee Centre with the bridge across the track

The site earmarked for the project is at Bodington Playing Fields to the north east of Leeds city centre. The Brownlee Triathalon site earmarked for the project is to the north east of Leeds city centre.

Proposals for the site currently include:-

  • Woodland creation – planting almost 4,000 trees and hedges at various locations across the site
  • Measures to improve the management of the flow of surface water including grass covered earth bund -embankments which act as flood barriers to store water and pocket wetland – to be formed from series of wetland scrapes (shallow ponds) to control storm-water
  • An interactive information board to educate visitors about the benefits of each type of NFM and monitoring taking place on the site
  • A teaching area for groups, for example a two-tier grass covered amphitheatre, formed as an earth bund, an NFM measure and benches made from wood from various tree species on site
  • Demonstration areas featuring how to build your own leaky dam, the life-cycle of a tree and a sand pit where you can re-meander a straightened water channel
  • A discovery walk featuring sculptures, nature base art, activities, wildlife spotting, edible hedges and a sensory trail
  • Creation of a virtual tour of the site using 360 degree photographs

This pilot site will be part of the flagship Natural Flood Management (NFM) programme which forms part of the second phase of the Leeds Flood Alleviation Scheme alongside traditional engineering. The development of the scheme is being led by Leeds City Council, working alongside the Environment Agency. This phase got underway this year and aims to invest £112.1 million in flood prevention measures for areas upstream of Leeds city centre, to better protect 1,048 homes and 474 businesses.

The NFM element is transformational in scale working with nature to reduce the risk of flooding across the catchment from the source of the River Aire, at Malham, through to Leeds City Centre. The programme will not only reduce flow of water from upstream so the landscape can hold more water in times of flood but also restore and create new habitat, increase biodiversity resilience and improve water quality. As well as tree and hedge planting, it includes re-channelling rivers to their natural courses, soil aeration, wetland creation and moorland restoration all of which have lots of benefits for people and wildlife. This will contribute to delivering the Government’s 25 Year Environment Plan and realising the vision of the Northern Forest in the Aire catchment.

For more information about the LeedsFAS visit www.leeds.gov.uk/fas

 

A photograph of Esther Simpson

The Esther Simpson Building

The latest phase of the LUBS and School of Law Expansion project will pay tribute to the University of Leeds graduate, Esther Simpson.

Esther Simpson, who graduated from Leeds in 1924 with first class honours in French with German, spent nearly all her working life as secretary to the Academic Assistance Council (later, the Society for the Protection of Science and Learning – SPSL). She was awarded the OBE in 1956; the French Government made her Officier d’Académie; and after her retirement in 1966, she received two honorary doctorates, including one from Leeds in 1989.

In honour of her career, this new building is now officially called The Esther Simpson Building. It will be a new central teaching space for all to use and will provide technology-rich, flexible teaching spaces, lecture theatres, and trading rooms. Work began at the Lyddon Terrace site in Winter 2019 and is due to be completed in 2021.

Watch a fly-through of the Esther Simpson Building.

 

 

 

The Nigel Bertram Centre at the National Pig Centre

University opens National Pig Centre in Yorkshire

Precision nutrition and 24-hour monitoring will enable scientists to provide new insights for the pig industry, as the University of Leeds opens the National Pig Centre.

Scientists from a range of disciplines at the University will use new state-of-the-art facilities to help improve the sustainability and efficiency of pig production.

Supported by more than £11 million investment, the facilities make Yorkshire one of the best places in Europe for pig research.

The National Pig Centre will be a leading research facility for pig nutrition, behaviour, health and production system research – all themes identified by the livestock industry as central to improving quality, productivity and future competitiveness.

Professor Lisa Collins, academic lead for the PigSustain project and Head of the University of Leeds’ School of Biology, said: “This new centre allows us to expand our work to improve the welfare of pigs, and the sustainability of the British pig industry.

“Our aim is to lower the environmental footprint of pig farming whilst ensuring that high welfare standards are maintained.”

Ribbon being cut at the opening of the National Pig Centre

The new centre will benefit from academic expertise drawn from across a range of disciplines including nutrition, health, behaviour and fertility, as well as computer vision, engineering, soil and water sciences, data analytics, and atmospheric and climate science.

It has been launched in partnership with CIEL (Centre for Innovation Excellence in Livestock). CIEL has invested £4.5 million with funding from Innovate UK, the UK’s Innovation Agency.

The investment includes a three-fold increase in the previous capacity of the farm, from 200 to 660 sows, – ensuring the research carried out better represents commercial pig farming. Of these, 220 will live outdoors.

The combination of an outdoor sow unit with an indoor system is unique in Europe, enabling direct comparison of the different rearing systems.

Academics will work to identify the key factors contributing to pig farming’s environmental footprint, and attempt to find alternatives that could drive down the sector’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Their findings will help the UK achieve the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) target of reaching net zero greenhouse gas emissions across the whole of agriculture in England and Wales by 2040.

The centre’s indoor facility includes the ability to perform in-depth, automated nutrition trials to understand how best to feed and manage pigs at all stages of production. By harnessing precision nutrition, based on individual requirements, the aim is to reduce the cost of production, improve feed efficiency and reduce the environment impact of pig farming.

Researchers will also be able to make feed recommendations which keep pace with ongoing genetic improvements to pigs.

Tour of the National Pig Centre at the opening event

The indoor facility is equipped with CCTV throughout, permitting round the clock observations of individual pig’s behaviour at all stages of production. Researchers will utilise computer vision to automate data collection from the video footage, so behaviour and nutrition can be monitored at the individual pig level.

Students from across the University will have the opportunity to study at the National Pig Centre as part of their degrees, and some will have chance to contribute to research projects taking place at the farm.

Sir Alan Langlands, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Leeds, said: “Leeds is proud to be working in a number of ways at home and internationally to improve food security and the sustainability of the agricultural sector.

The National Pig Centre will provide a key national resource for industry to work in partnership with the University to develop innovative and practical solutions that make a positive contribution to the economy, environment and society.

We are hugely grateful for the strong support we have received from CIEL and Nigel Bertram, and the leading edge work of Helen Miller, our Professor of Animal Bioscience, in developing this facility.”

The facility has also been supported by a generous donation from University of Leeds alumnus Nigel Bertram.

Named in his honour, the Nigel Bertram Visitor Centre features conference and meeting facilities, offices and a live CCTV feed from the indoor pig unit.

Collaborating with industry

Centrally located in the UK, the National Pig Centre will promote engagement, discussion and collaboration between researchers and industry. The University and CIEL will work together to drive this process.

A membership organisation, CIEL works with businesses across the livestock supply chain to identify & develop their research needs and build relevant collaborations to deliver new technologies and processes that address key challenges facing the sector.

“We’re very proud to work with Leeds and develop this first for the pig and pork industry,” said Lyndsay Chapman, CIEL’s Chief Executive. “It provides unique research capability on a commercially relevant scale and complements the investments we’ve made across the CIEL network. Through our nationwide collaborative alliance, we’re working to ensure industry has access to the very best expertise in this field of research.”

Tackling challenges in food security

Projects at the National Pig Centre will help tackle some of the current challenges in pig production including:

  • Nutrition: developing precision feeding for livestock to improve sustainability and productivity and study the effects of nutrition on welfare and behaviour
  • Anti-microbial resistance: developing healthier pigs with more robust gut health and improved resistance to disease, thereby reducing antibiotic use
  • Production systems: improving efficiency of production and identifying better ways to feed and manage pigs
  • Monitoring pig behaviour and developing algorithms to allow early detection of health conditions

The National Pig Centre is one of the University facilities that will help deliver the goals of the Global Food and Environment Institute (GFEI), which aims to address the challenge of feeding the world whilst protecting natural resources.

This work aligns closely to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, particularly to end hunger, achieve food security and promote sustainable agriculture.

As well as the pig farm, GFEI is also carrying out research projects in arable farming, urban food consumption and health, food security in the Global South, and international food supply chains.

Representatives from the University, BAM and architect design team at the Bragg project event

University’s new building reaches its summit

The construction of the new Sir William Henry Bragg building at the University of Leeds celebrated a milestone today, as the building reached its tallest point.

To mark the occasion a special “Topping Out” event took place. University colleagues were joined by representatives from main contractor BAM Construction and architect design team ADP, BAM Design, Arcadis, Gardiner & Theobald, ARUP and Silcock Leedham.

Colleagues watched as the building’s plant room was lifted onto the roof, forming the highest point of the new building. The plant for this technologically advanced new building is complex, and BAM has assembled the plant room off-site in a factory environment, with the support of local Leeds company Waites Mechanical Services, saving time and cost on the project.

Set to open its doors to students in 2021, the new building represents a significant investment by the University in a new integrated campus for Engineering and Physical Sciences. The facility will include first-class laboratory and specialised teaching spaces, enabling cutting-edge research, and outstanding student experience, whilst enhancing the University’s research power and strengthening collaboration with industry.

Steve Gilley, Director of Estates and Facilities said:

“I’d like to thank all of our partners who have contributed to this flagship project to date. It’s important to mark key milestones, and recognise the importance of the expertise from extended project teams, to ensure the successful construction of this new facility.”

For BAM Construction, John Phillips said:

“Topping out is a centuries old tradition, and this year BAM is 150 years old, while the University’s origins date back to a similar time, to 1874. Today we are both known for being leaders in modern technology. The University is looking to the future, and BAM are delighted to be helping them to create facilities for the next generations of students and academics.”

Joe Morgan, Director, ADP said:

“This project was conceived in 2015 as a critical component of the strategic masterplan, to create a collaborative hub for computing and physical sciences. The building champions the need to address tomorrow’s challenges whilst minimising its impact on the environment, so it is appropriate that one of the components designed to make this building so highly energy efficient should be lowered into place as part of the ‘topping out’ celebration.”

Ian Aldous, Director, Arcadis said:

The scale of this project – from the stakeholder engagement through to the design solution and delivery – has been immense and everyone involved has been on a real journey. As such, to see the critical milestone being reached is hugely satisfying for all involved, and a testimony to the dedication of all parties to the future vision.

Colleagues watch as the plant room is craned to the roof of the Sir William Henry Bragg Building project

 

Learn more about the Cloberry Street Building project

Work begins on new teaching facility

Colleagues have come together to mark the start of work on a new teaching facility on Lyddon Terrace.

Representatives from Estates, Leeds University Business School and the School of Law joined the contractor BAM construction and architects DLA Architecture to mark this important construction milestone.

LUBS Ground Breaking

Richard Gaughan, Gardiner & Theobald LLP; Kevin Pollard, BAM; Craig Reed, Director of DLA Architecture; Professor Nicholas Scott, Leeds University Business School; Professor Julia Bennell, Leeds University Business School; Steve Gilley, Estates and Facilities Services; Dennis Hopper, Director of Campus Developments; Mitali Agrawal, Leeds University Business School; Ben Walker, Gardiner & Theobald LLP; Mark Sanderson, BAM

The investment, on Lyddon Terrace, will create a new central teaching facility which will also house space for the Business School and the School of Law.  It is proposed that prominent features of the building will include a new Trading Room, flexible teaching areas and Behavioural Laboratories to provide more flexible and innovative ways of teaching.

Steve Gilley, Director of Estates and Facilities said: “This new building is contributing to the University’s wider ambition to create an environment that promotes learning, innovation and enterprise. It will provide technology-rich, flexible teaching spaces, lecture theatres and trading rooms, further advancing the delivery of world-class teaching solutions.”

Professor Julia Bennell, Dean of Leeds University Business School, said: It is wonderful to mark the beginning of the construction of this new state-of-the-art teaching facility. I am grateful to the many Business School colleagues and Leeds University Union (LUU) students who contributed to designing what will be a world class student-centred learning environment. These new facilities will further enhance our reputation as a leading Business School.

Mitali Agrawal, a Business School Student Representative for the Marketing division said: “This important investment in the new building is testament to the dedication and commitment of the Business School in enhancing its students’ learning experiences here at the University.”

BAM construction director, Kelvin Pollard, said: “It is fantastic to be building another world-class teaching facility at the University of Leeds, where we are already on site delivering the Sir William Henry Bragg building. We have well-established, strong working relationships with the University and this is an excellent basis to work from.”

Click here for more information about this project.

No access to the Chemistry Building via St George’s Field: 9 – 16 December 2019

There will be no access to the Chemistry Building via St George’s Field from Monday 9 December – Monday 16 December. 

BAM will be removing the steel stair from St George’s Field coming down to their scaffold tunnel outside the Chemistry Building as part of the Sir William Henry Bragg Building project. Pedestrians who use St George’s Field to access the School of Chemistry will have to use an alternative route.

For enquiries please contact: Estate Services Helpdesk on 0113 345555 or email: eshelp@leeds.ac.uk

Thank you for your cooperation and we apologise for any inconvenience caused.

 

Parkinson Building main entrance with accessible lift

The Parkinson Building is now fully accessible

The Parkinson Building our most iconic building on campus, has elevated its profile following the completion of work to install a lift at the main entrance of the building.

Following a detailed scheme of improvement works, which has included the installation of the lift alongside the upgrading of the steps and handrails, together, for the first time in history, the University has made it possible for all visitors, students and staff to enter Parkinson Building using the main entrance.

Len Wilson, Deputy Director of Estates commented: “The University makes every effort to improve accessibility across campus. The Parkinson steps have been an iconic gateway to the University since its opening in 1951. Although a major focal point for student and visitor gatherings, the steps have been one of the most inaccessible parts of campus. The University has been keen to address this and ensure all visitors, students and staff are able to enter this iconic building via the same entrance, have the same experience and be equally inspired.”

The Parkinson Building with the new accessible lift

The University is made up of a community of people with diverse backgrounds and circumstances, which we value and regard as a great asset. As part of our continued commitment to equality and inclusion, we strive to create an environment where everyone can access our campus, have an opportunity to participate in and contribute to our activities allowing everyone to reach their full potential.

Sabiha Patel, Head of Equality and Inclusion, commented: “I am grateful to the University and delighted with this development to Parkinson Building.  Full access to our buildings is an essential first step to inclusion.   Everyone should now be able to enter the building easily and take advantage of all the opportunities it affords.”

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