LSC unlocks two more college schemes

The Learning and Skills Council has approved two new further education college capital projects for Manchester and Lancashire, with contributions from the quango of nearly £40m.

Manchester College will revamp its campus on Brownley Road, Wythenshawe to improve its vocational and sixth form facilities. The project is the final phase of the college's redevelopment scheme. The total cost of the project is £27.5m and the LSC will contribute £7m.

Lancashire, Skelmersdale & Ormskirk College, now part of Newcastle College, will create a new campus as part of the town centre's redevelopment. The total project cost is £42.8m and the LSC will contribute £32.6m.

The LSC sparked outrage when it halted dozens of college building projects around the country after drastically over-committing its budget. A fraction have since been allocated new funding.

Property consultancy Drivers Jonas advised on selection of three contractors on behalf of Manchester College for its projects in Wythenshawe, Harpurhey and Didsbury.

ISG has been appointed to construct a new £16.2m sixth form campus at the Wythenshawe site on Brownley Road. The scheme will deliver 85,000 sq ft including a BREEAM 'Excellent' and zero carbon building.

Quarmby Construction will create £6.2m of additional sixth-form facilities on Rochdale Road in Harpurhey. The Grade II-listed Harpurhey baths will be restored and over 30,000 sq ft of BREEAM 'Very Good' rated space created.

At the Fielden campus in Didsbury, Wates has been appointed to carry out £6.4m of major internal and external refurbishment work on the Manchester College's existing buildings at the site.

Construction on the Fielden and Harpurhey projects has already started, with the Wythenshawe project due to start before the end of September.

Drivers Jonas was assisted by Walker Simpson Architects, quantity surveyors Simon Fenton Partnership, structural engineering group Arup, and engineering company Operon.

Steve Jordan, Partner of Drivers Jonas Manchester, said: "The near £45m investment in these three projects is a significant boost to the city's educational infrastructure and regeneration to the communities in which they will be built in."

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