Topping out of the Design Centre
State-of-the-art design studios for Falmouth College of Arts
at Tremough, Penryn, will be 'topped out' on Thursday
22 May 2003.
The ceremony will be performed by Gerry Robinson, Chairman
of Arts Council England, former Chairman of Granada plc, presenter
of 'I'll Show Them Who's Boss' (BBC2) and Chairman of
Allied Domecq plc.
The Design Centre is the first section of the 'hub'
building for the Objective One funded Combined Universities
in Cornwall (CUC) that will be opened at the Tremough Campus.
The topping out ceremony indicates that the building has
attained its highest point. Gerry Robinson will lay the final
trowel of cement, and an evergreen bough (for good luck) will
be fixed to the top of the building.
The Design Centre will be opened to students in October this
year, just 12 months after construction started in earnest.
It will be the first section of the new CUC building at Tremough
to be completed. Falmouth College of Arts' students in
five design disciplines (3D and spatial design, contemporary
crafts, garden design and textile design) will move into spacious
open-plan studios which are terraced down the hillside.
The second section of the new CUC building, which Falmouth
College of Arts will share with the University of Exeter,
is on schedule to open in October 2004. The two institutions
will continue to provide their own academic programmes at
Tremough, though they will share responsibility for managing
other services on the campus.
The whole building has about 16,500 square metres (200,000
square feet) of floor space, equivalent to three football
pitches, and it is currently the largest construction project
in Cornwall. The £45 million cost is being met mainly
by Cornwall's Objective One European investment Programme,
via the European Regional Development Fund, with additional
investment from the South West Regional Development Agency.
Investment for the expansion of student places is being provided
by the Higher Education Funding Council for England.
Contractors for the CUC building, which is on schedule and
on budget, are Sir Robert McAlpine Ltd. The architects are
Percy Thomas Architects of Cardiff. Buro Happold of Bath are
the consulting engineers.
The CUC building is thoroughly modern in concept and design.
It has angles and curves, ramps and unexpected corners, as
well as open spaces among the teaching rooms, laboratories
and studios. The building sits back into the Tremough hillside,
to reduce its impact on the landscape, and it will have a
planted roof, to absorb rainfall. Natural light and natural
ventilation are used wherever possible, to reduce energy usage.
The exterior walls will incorporate reclaimed stone from local
quarries and will be clad in wood and glass, including a glass
wall 200 feet (65m) long that separates The Design Centre
from the central courtyard.
The Design Centre occupies about one third of the total building.
The open-plan layout of the design studios results from discussions
between the architects and the teaching staff of Falmouth
College of Arts. Jonathan Adams, of Percy Thomas Architects,
said, "Teaching staff felt it was important to remove
the barriers between different subjects and to encourage the
sharing of ideas. The stepped arrangement of the studios allows
for a balance of inward-looking concentration and outward-looking
Nearly £1 million of new equipment will be installed
in The Design Centre, including an industry-standard rapid
prototyping machine for creating high-precision one-off models,
and a power Jacquard loom, controlled by computer.
The Tremough Campus also accommodates Falmouth College of
Arts' media programmes. It will eventually be the base
for some 1500 FCA students.
Professor Alan Livingston, Principal of Falmouth College
of Arts and Chair of the Combined Universities in Cornwall
Executive Group, said, "The Design Centre encapsulates
the aims of the Combined Universities in Cornwall initiative.
It will provide some of the best facilities in the country
for students in Cornwall. It offers space for expansion: we
can draw more students into Higher Education, both from within
Cornwall and beyond. And as part of the Tremough Campus, The
Design Centre represents a unique collaboration between Higher
Russell Day, Project Manager at Tremough for Sir Robert McAlpine
Ltd, said, "The whole CUC building at Tremough is imaginative
and complex. We have known from the start that to complete
it on time would be a challenge, but I am delighted to say
that we remain confident that The Design Centre can be completed
on schedule, and work is advanced on the rest of the building.
Sir Robert McAlpine is pleased to be involved in such a prominent
project in Cornwall."
For further information contact:
Falmouth College of Arts, Woodlane, Falmouth, TR11 4RH
Tel: 01326 213756
Media Relations Manager
Objective One Partnership Office
Truro TR1 2UD
Mobile: 07973 813647
Telephone: 01872 223439