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The £40 million Northern Regional College campus on Union Street, Coleraine will be a ‘shared asset’ for students and the local community
When walking or driving around Coleraine town centre area you simply cannot miss the imposing construction taking place on Union Street.
The new state-of-the-art Northern Regional College (NRC) campus site is an impressive addition to the town’s skyline, and having reached its maximum height and the halfway stage of the construction, a topping out event was held to mark the occasion with Economy Minister Gordon Lyons in attendance.
A strong association between the local community and the estimated 1000 students expected to attend the new campus is a key factor with a number of exciting shared spaces an integral part of the NRC’s plans.
A fully equipped and high quality restaurant and hair and beauty salon, both of which will, at set times, be open to the public will provide students with the opportunity to train in a realistic environment.
The former St Patrick’s Church of Ireland hall will be a self-contained performing arts and music centre providing an additional resource not only for the College but also for the community.
An important feature of the design for the new campus has been to create a strong link with the town centre through the adjacent Anderson Park and the main entrance facing the park.
The main entrance will be via an open airy ‘garden room’ which will extend the park space into the building.
The landscape design will create an attractive reinvigorated outdoor space accessible to all which will benefit staff and students but also the whole community creating stronger links through to the town centre.
The new, purpose-built campus on the current, but extended site in Coleraine comprises a number of exciting spaces including, an Innovation Zone, a flexible area that can be adapted for a wide range of activities including cross curriculum project based learning, conferences and performances.
Mel Higgins, Principal and Chief Executive of Northern Regional College, said that the new campus will be a ‘shared asset’ for the Coleraine community: He added: “Alongside creating a world-class learning environment for our students and staff, our new campus will offer a wide range of shared spaces, restaurant and other facilities, to be enjoyed by local groups and community organisations – be it for learning, training and skills development or arts, culture and recreation.
“We remain grateful for the continued co-operation, support and encouragement of our neighbouring residents and businesses in Union Street and the surrounding area, who have shared in our excitement at seeing the building rise from the ground in recent months.”
The new campus remains on track for completion in the 2023/2024 academic year.