Wates tops up education order book

Wates Construction has won the £5.5m contract to build the new Hugh Baird College in Stanley Road, Bootle.

Wates will start this month on the 28,000 sq ft building designed by Taylor Young. Facilities will include teaching spaces, a creative arts centre, a public café and a learning resource centre and Job Centre Plus for community use.

The five-storey building is set to open in time for the new academic year in September 2013 academic year.

Wates recently completed Liverpool John Moores University's £37.6m Redmonds Building in Clarence Street in the city centre. Wates also delivered a new £13m laboratory building for Liverpool University last year and is on site with a primary school in Wirral.

The contractor aims to generate local training and employment opportunities at Hugh Baird. Tony Shenton, business unit director for Wates Construction North West, commented: "The new Hugh Baird College building will become an excellent facility for the people of Bootle, and will significantly contribute to the area's regeneration. Our specialist education team recently completed LJMU's Redmonds Building and their extensive knowledge and expertise will now be applied to yet another high-quality facility in Merseyside.

"As with all of our projects, we are committed to ensuring that our work acts as a catalyst for positive community impact and our delivery of Hugh Baird College will see us work closely with local sub-contractors and suppliers to support the region's economy."

Pat Farrell, executive director of estates and resources at Hugh Baird, said: "The college is already talking to community groups, local schools and Sefton Council to maximise the regeneration opportunities our new building could present for Bootle, particularly around the adjoining South Park. We want the new centre to be something the whole community can be proud of, helping to create jobs as well as providing vital community facilities and quality education on their doorstep. We are aiming to continue to offer great opportunities for young people, in both academic and vocational areas. At the same time, the state of the art facilities and expanding provision will provide access to higher education without the financial burden of having to travel outside of the area."

Wates was appointed to the project via the North West Construction Hub public procurement system. Wates has been on the hub's medium value framework, for contracts worth between £500,000 and £10m, and high value framework, for jobs in excess of £10m, since 2010.

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