University of Hertfordshire marks topping out of multi-million-pound SPECS development

30 March 2023

The construction of the University’s largest building, the new School for Physics, Engineering and Computer Science (SPECS), hit a landmark moment today, as staff held a topping out ceremony for the teaching, research and enterprise facility.

Foundations were laid last year for the five-storey building, which will be the largest single building at the University when it opens in September 2024. It will provide the SPECS department with a new home for students, teachers, researchers and the commercial sector to work together across a range of scientific fields. Over five floors, it will feature 15,000m2 of sophisticated facilities, including robotics labs, cybersecurity facilities, a structural testing facility and an experiential learning zone, allowing projects to be taken all the way from idea to testing under one roof.

The ceremony, which marks the overall completion of the building's structure, was attended by the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Governors and staff and representatives from the contracting partner, Morgan Sindall Construction.

Professor Quintin McKellar, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Hertfordshire, said:
“This is an exciting time for the University and we are delighted to be marking this major milestone for the School of Physics, Engineering and Computer Science, ahead of schedule.

“Not only will this building help to boost critical skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, but it will also ensure our students are ready for the future; trained in the most up-to-date technology and research to be ready for the challenges of an ever-changing world. It will also help us increase diversity in this area; support growth by enhancing our research facilities for use by our commercial partners and ensure we continue to play a key role in boosting the economy for Hertfordshire and beyond.”

David Rowsell, Northern Home Counties Area Director at Morgan Sindall Construction, said:
“This ceremony marks an exciting moment in the development of the School of Physics, Engineering and Computer Science, as when complete this building will boost much needed STEM skills while providing a vital hub for advanced research and academic innovation.

"During the design and construction of this new building, we've utilised our Intelligent Solutions approach to deliver innovative engineering solutions to help ensure we create a high-end facility tailored to the University of Hertfordshire’s requirements."


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