Morgan Sindall has started work on the £8m Wirral Met College Campus in Birkenhead, the first new building to emerge in Peel's Wirral Waters development.
The teaching facility designed by Glenn Howells Architects will specialise in enterprise and construction.
The first element of Wirral Waters was originally expected to be the 500,000 sq ft phase one of the £200m Peel International Trade Centre which gained planning consent in September 2011. A development joint venture agreement with Chinese investor Stella Shiu's Sam Wa Minerals was signed in May 2012. In December 2013 a contract was signed with Beijing Construction to build the project, aimed at overseas importers to showcase their products to the UK market. The site has been cleared but construction has yet to begin on the ITC. In 2013, Lindsey Ashworth, director of Peel, and investment partner Stella Shiu told Place North West prospective tenants in China and elsewhere were being courted to sign pre-lets and work was expected to start when the required number were signed up. No one at Peel was available to comment today on the progress with pre-lets to date.
The college construction team is led by Morgan Sindall area director Barry Roberts. He said: "We are proud to be working with Peel Group on this fantastic new campus for Wirral Met College at Wirral Waters. This is my home town and the college has enhanced the prospects of Wirralians for generations and it is gratifying to help people in the region continue their work. We hope to leave a long term legacy by introducing local economic benefits and opportunities for local people at the college."
The project is due for completion in September. Funding was provided by the Homes & Communities Agency, the Skills Funding Agency, Wirral Council and Peel.
Peel's Wirral Waters seeks to transform 500 acres of semi derelict dockland in Birkenhead. Wirral Waters forms part of the Government granted Mersey Waters Enterprise Zone.