A new multimillion-pound academic building providing ultramodern classrooms for thousands of students has been unveiled at the University of Chichester.
A ceremony was held for the opening of the development – situated at the Bishop Otter campus in Chichester – which contains a large cinema as well as a sprung floor for dance and theatre performances.
The build is part of multimillion-pound investments across the Chichester and Bognor Regis campuses to improve the experience of the students and offer new facilities for the nearby community.
University Vice-Chancellor Professor Clive Behagg said: “This new development will provide a world-class learning environment for the next generation of students at Chichester.
“We are committed to providing an outstanding learning experience and will continue to invest in both our Chichester and Bognor Regis campuses to ensure that teaching spaces meet the creative, physical, and technological needs of our community.”
The academic building, which cost £6.8m to construct, includes a modern students’ union shop as well as a specialist IT suite and new security room.
Peter Tierney, director of estate management at the University, said: “This is the first non-dedicated teaching space built by Chichester in more than 40 years and can used by any of our academic departments or for hosting community groups or events.
“It is environmentally friendly, including photovoltaic solar panels and natural ventilation, and this summer will by surrounded by meadow flowers to improve the sense of arrival when you visit the campus.”
The new academic building follows largescale plans to improve the teaching facilities and infrastructure of the university - which also includes the new Engineering and Digital Technology Park in Bognor Regis.
The Park, which is currently undergoing construction, will offer STEM-focused degrees – science, maths, engineering, and technology – to provide businesses in the area with a new generation of skilled workers.
The University intends to deliver 500 student places each year by 2020 and expects graduates to generate an additional £5million per annum into the regional economy.
To find out more go to www.chi.ac.uk/techpark