Once planning permission is granted, work is due to to commence on the site of the old Windle Building.
Architects O’Donnell + Twomey are designing a brand new student building, as laid out in the University Strategic Plan, which aims to deliver “research-inspired teaching and learning with a world-class student experience”. The state-of-the-art “Hub Building” will have a major impact on student life in UCC.
The Student Hub will be a 5 story, technology-rich building for all students. The building will be a new home to Clubs, Societies, Student Media, the Students’ Union, UCC 98.3fm and all Student Activities. The entire building will be open to students to use as study spaces, pop-up locations for events or whatever they can think of! A kitchenette will allow students bring in their own food and hot water points throughout the building mean students can get their all-important caffeine fix.
The new student building will have an entrance hall for large-scale exhibitions & events, an impressive stepped space for performances & guest speakers, a fully equipped radio station, an art / maker space and dedicated employability skills areas. High-tech group project rooms will be available and the building will have collaborative common spaces throughout. The top floor of the building will contain a remarkable open-plan space, with views of the surrounding city & county, which will be used for large-scale University & student events. This incredible space will be set up as a common area when not in use and will be a destination room for visitors to the University.
O’Donnell + Tuomey are internationally renowned architects who have previously worked on the Glucksman Gallery in UCC and the London School of Economics Student Centre. Recently they were awarded the Royal Gold Medal, architecture’s highest award, in recognition of their lifetime’s work as a “tour de force in Irish and British architecture”.
The new building is set to become home to many student services which are currently distributed across 25 different locations. This will centralise many of the services that students frequently use including the Careers Service, Disability Service, Mature Student Office, UCC+ and many more.
Using the new Creative Zone in the library as a model, the building also hopes to create a sense of ownership and identity among the student body, providing new study and group spaces, innovative teaching and learning spaces and new open common spaces for all students to use.
Barry Nevin, UCCSU Comms Officer, who has worked on the project for the past two years said, “This is going to be a an incredible building for everyone. There’s going to be amazing spaces for people involved in Clubs, Societies or any student to use. For the whole building, we have been looking to spaces like Facebook / Google offices for inspiration so every space will be an exciting, creative area to work in!”.
The University will be rolling out a number of initiatives over coming weeks and months to introduce all students and staff to the new building, get input and engage everyone in this exciting project. The history and legacy of the building as an important feature to medical and other alumni will also be preserved as part of the project.
A website is under construction that will be the home for all news, updates and competitions. There will soon be information stands in the library with a 3D model of the new building, designs, images and project updates.
Once planning permission is granted it is planned to commence the enabling works over the Summer followed by the main works with a projected completion in 2018.