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  1. Vision and Strategy 2026
  2. Projects
About City

Building the Vision

In 2012 we invested more than £15M in improvements to City's estate followed by further investment of over £130m delivered via the Estates Strategy 2012-2017.  Read about some of the projects achieved during that time below.

The coming years will see the creation of more stunning new spaces and mark a step change in how our built environment meets the developing nature of our education, research and enterprise.

Ashby Street Optometry Clinics

The Ashby Street Optometry Clinics Project began in early January 2015, and completed on time in July 2015.

The project formed a key element in the consolidation of the School of Health Sciences at Northampton Square which was formerly spaced across several sites.

This new facility now:

  • Centralises public optometry clinics, alongside research areas and teaching space in a single facility which allow students to access shared resources
  • Facilitates greater inter-disciplinary interaction to reflect 'real life' health care provision
  • Facilitates an increase in the number of sight test clinics and incorporate private clinics
  • Provides a space for final year Optometry students to dispense contact lenses and spectacles to individuals with visual impairments.

Cass Executive

In 2013 Cass Business School acquired prestigious new premises to house Executive Education and Executive MBA courses. Occupying the second floor of 200 Aldersgate Street, this new space offers executive clients state-of-the-art facilities. The space has been designed to provide clients and students with modern, fully equipped teaching spaces, social space and a cafe, which offers an experience similar to that of being in a 'business class' airport lounge, with modern, contemporary, quality high-spec furniture, fixtures and technology. It also encourages the free flow of conversation, ideas and networking, an ethos at the heart of Cass's approach to education and business.

The new premises feature:

  • A generous sized social space that provides the opportunity for Cass to cater for a range of events, from formal dining, working breakfasts to speaker and networking events for up to 180 people.
  • A shared lounge and cafe, which is available to all building tenants, as well as a shared secure cycle lock-up provision, showering and changing facilities
  • Cass shares the occupancy of the building with Etc Venues, amongst others, providing us with the opportunity to take advantage of the events facilities they offer, including a conference suite which can hold up to 400 guests. There is also a state-of-the-art Virgin Gym situated in the basement of the building, with discounted membership offered to tenants.

Cass Undergraduate

The Cass Undergraduate Project has expanded Cass facilities at Northampton Square to encompass the entire top floor of Drysdale Building.

The new space provides:

  • A professional and vibrant hub with which Cass students and staff can identify
  • Flexible open plan office areas and meeting rooms for Cass students and staff
  • Flexible multi-use education spaces Improved spatial efficiency
  • The full potential of Level 3, including the balcony area as social/break out space.


With over 3,000m² of floor space, CitySport provides outstanding facilities and equipment for students, staff and the local community, whether their focus is on training for health and wellbeing, rehabilitation, improving sports performance or simply having fun.

At the heart of CitySport sits Saddlers Sport Hall, an elite competition sports hall of Sport England standard with seating for up to 400 spectators. It accommodates basketball, badminton, five-a-side football, volleyball, netball and other court games. There is also an impressive strength and conditioning area with free-weights and resistance equipment and purpose-built studios for group exercise, martial arts, mind and body classes, spinning and student team sports.

Gloucester Building

The Gloucester Building Project reconfigured and improved existing office space (March - June 2013). The refurbished Gloucester Building provides a more efficient mix of cellular and open plan space, supporting better conditions for collaborative work. The reconfiguration also offers more natural light, an improved external appearance, more storage and upgraded facilities in the building.

Lecture Spaces

Creation of new education space and new vertical access routes to the University Building Level 1 walkway (April - September 2013).

The Lecture Spaces Project (phase 1) created new education spaces in the lower levels of the University Building with new access routes to the main walkway (opened in September 2013).

This project brings back into use redundant spaces, optimising them to create a pool of high quality teaching spaces.

Phases 2 and 3 of the project are now also open, building further capacity in the basement of our Drysdale Building. The new educational space provides a substantial number of lecture theatres and seminar rooms  that will accommodate a busy teaching programme aimed to stimulate and engage students in a collaborative learning environment.

Now at completion, the project:

  • Provides high quality academic space Is flexible and adaptable to a range of teaching models
  • Brings back to use spaces that have become redundant
  • Consolidates teaching space Is fully accessible with improved way finding
  • Offers co-located break out and informal social spaces
  • Maximises the use of natural light.

Main Entrance and 240-seat Lecture Theatre

Major refurbishment underway to improve the main entrance of Northampton Square and the creation of a large lecture theatre in place of the Graduate Learning Centre (May 2015 - September 2016).

The Main Entrance and Lecture Theatre project began in summer 2015. Work involves the remodelling, refurbishment and extension of the ground floor and level 1 of the University Building, and the introduction of a new 240-seat lecture theatre in place of the current Graduate Learning Centre. This main phase of work was preceded by various relocations within the site, beginning in January with the closure of Waterstones. The primary objectives of the Main Entrance project are to improve the entrance experience, functionality and visual appearance of the institution, to enhance access and circulation, and to provide a space to meet and share ideas. The project is due to complete in late 2016.

On completion, the project will provide:

  • A new ground level entrance that is open and welcoming and will connect Northampton Square to Spencer Street, improving City's relationship to the surrounding areas
  • A new pavilion which provides a multi-purpose space and increases entrance capacity
  • Reconfigures the circulation, adding a new stair from the ground to level 1 which will create a tall open space that will provide a visual connection from the entrance foyer to the level 1 main concourse
  • A new 240-seat lecture theatre, directly accessible from the main entrance complex.

Tait Building Lower Ground Floor

Major reconfiguration of existing space for the School of Mathematics, Computer Science & Engineering (March 2013 - February 2014).

CityBar, our new bar/cafe, was completed in September 2014 on the ground floor of the Tait Building. This new space provides fantastic new facilities, designed through consultation with the Students' Union, and replaces the previous facility behind University Building.

The new facility offers flexible space that can be used for events, socialising and group working/meetings, all within a modern, welcoming setting. The space is accessible via a new entrance on Goswell Road and will contribute towards improving Tait Building's visual permeability at ground floor level. Through the introduction of two new glazed sections of the façade, the bar/cafe will benefit greatly from much more natural light than its previous home.

Tait Building School of Health Sciences

A large amount of work has taken place on levels two and three of the Tait Building to bring clusters of specialist facilities together for the School of Health Science. Facilities have been redeveloped as follows:

Tait Level 2 teaching space

  • A large Clinical Skills room is located in the deeper plan along the east wing, with two dedicated store areas on the opposite side of the corridor and a new changing space adjacent to the existing space in the north-east core. The fit-out of this area replicates (albeit as a single space) rooms C208 and C210, which emulate hospital wards with curtained bed spaces, bedhead trunking, hoists and a sluice array. One teaching wall is provided with storage underneath.
  • Clinical Skills rooms and bio-labs along the north wing have been retained and supplemented by additional space at Level 3 (see below).
  • The VERT (Virtual Environment of a Radiotherapy Treatment room) spaces are located in the narrower side of the east wing preferring a long, thin arrangement as requested in discussion with the users. The facility consists of a projector room and teaching space with a screen dividing the two areas. The original installers (Virtalis) have relocated equipment to the new space. Full blackout is achieved by erecting a solid partition along the window wall with matt finishes to walls, floors and ceilings in line with manufacturer's recommendations. This room also houses the relocated laser gantry from the current CT scanner room in the basement of Drysdale Building.
  • The relocated X-Ray Suite is situated in the quieter south wing and forms a cluster around a dedicated control lobby. The relocation of the specialist equipment and fit-out of these rooms was undertaken as a 'turnkey' package through equipment providers Siemens including lead lining, internal finishes and fittings. Final certification of the facility was coordinated by Siemens using the Radiation Protection Advisors (RPA) based at St George's Healthcare NHS Trust.
  • LCS (Language and Communication Sciences) are located opposite the X-Ray Suite. This consists of a speech and gesture lab and a listening room accessed from its own dedicated lobby. The acoustics are critical to the operation of this room both in terms of reverberation within the space and transmission of sound from within the building and external sources. An acoustic consultant was appointed and a full report is available in Appendix D. An additional break out room to a less onerous acoustic requirement is also provided.
  • Two PC labs provided in the east wing. Room C239 will be used mainly by Radiography and features a perimeter arrangement of computer benching. Room C244 features island pods, a meeting table and short run of perimeter desk space and will be used by LCS.
  • The Optometry Physical Sciences Lab is reduced in size and has been remodelled to form seven distinct working booths.
  • The Optometry Teaching Labs have been retained along the west wing but with a small remodel of an existing store area to create a Clinical Diagnostic Lab. In addition, the poorly used end of C204 is now partitioned off to contain the Clinical Practice and Discussion room relocated from C258.

Tait Level 2 research space

  • Ocular Optics, room C267: A large open plan area with curtained bays containing optical tables and a central storage zone.
  • Psycho-physics, rooms C261, C263, C264 and C265: Existing long thin office spaces are retained with minimal alterations. Corner desks accommodate data processing using multiple PCs.
  • 'Bath Street' research spaces, rooms C266, C270, C268, C269. Four spaces with a separate lobby area are created to largely replicate the spaces currently available on the 6th floor of Bath Street (currently used for 'screening study of equipment and its impact on eye care'). One space has been designed to accommodate new 'Octopus' equipment (an automatic projection perimeter for the examination of the whole field of sight).
  • DC space (Measurement Techniques in Vision), room C274: One of the few spaces not requiring blackout, this area is designed as a flexible computer based lab with perimeter benching and a small break out area able to be used for small discussion groups without disturbing the general working environment.
  • Photometry, room C259: This room contains a series of test equipment for colour vision assessment, photometric standards calibration, precision approach path indicator test and conventional colour assessment tests.
  • Human Visiomotor control/Visual Electrophysiology, rooms C250/C251: These laboratories share a common waiting area and storage facility. The former room is set up to assess human responses via a series of linked wall-mounted cameras and the latter is shared by two researchers who run a series of visual electrophysiological tests using mobile equipment.
  • Shared Clinical Lab, room C249: This space is a similar facility to the existing room C237 and includes curtained bays for a map test, sight test, and OCT. The room is also equipped with a sink and worktop.
  • East wing John Barbur Labs, rooms C237, C242, C243, C245, C246, C247, C248: A series of two larger rooms with curtained bays and five smaller spaces all with blackout. A flexible arrangement of services has been provided to allow final equipment and furniture layouts to be accommodated.
  • 'Wet' research labs in the NE part of the plan remain largely as existing. Doors from the Neurobiology Suite onto the stair lobby have been infilled with a new pass fire escape door inserted into C203.
  • Research Support Areas, room C271 (workshop) and room C257 (store).
  • Additional research/hot desk areas, rooms C272 and C272a are two existing office spaces which will not form part of the scope of this project. These are intended to be used for hot desk areas or to house future research requirements. To supplement this facility the existing kitchen/staffroom can be used as a more informal break-out area.

Tait Level 3

The north east corner has been remodelled and refurbished to create two new clinical teaching spaces similar in function to C215 and C216 on Level 2. These are located adjacent to the stair and core closest to the Level 2 clinical teaching areas to allow ease of movement between floors. The goods lift is also in this corner to allow equipment to be transferred as required.

Level 3 has been substantially developed along the north wing to create lecture and seminar spaces displaced from L0 as a result of the SEMS project.

Tait Level 1 Amenity Project

The large scale re-configuration of Tait Level 1 (south elevation) to create a number of new facilities for students (May 2016 – August 2017).

This project will introduce a number of new student-facing facilities into Tait Building, namely:

  • A suite of space for the Students’ Union,
  • New informal learning and quiet study spaces,
  • A multi-faith area,
  • A new cafeteria space for staff and students,
  • Landscaping to the courtyard.
  • A new route through Tait, aligned with the Goswell Road entrance.

The project will be delivered in phases, with the cafeteria area due to open first in early 2017. Until this opening, catering services provided to staff in The Hive will be relocated to the Staff Common Room in Tait. This is an exciting and extensive set of developments and will require significant demolition. We will schedule this during the quieter summer months in 2016.

Sebastian Street

We are constructing a new home for The City Law School, opening in 2019.  The building will provide 7,200 sq m of world class educational facilities for our students and staff. . Download the Sebastian Street development display (PDF)

Drysdale Ground Floor Project

The complete refurbishment of Drysdale ground floor providing upgraded PC labs, improved building access and new flexible study spaces.

This important project will completely refurbish the ground floor of Drysdale Building, transforming tired and underused estate into a vibrant, connected and better configured social and study space.

Specifically, on completion these works will deliver:

  • Cutting edge PC labs, more social and breakout spaces
  • A new mezzanine balcony, providing additional PC spaces Improved external building access, including for 24hr use
  • External landscaping, including increased bicycle storage
  • Upgraded connectivity with/visibility for Cass space on level 3 of the building.