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Sussex Coast College, Hastings

John Laing signed a partnership agreement with Hastings FE College in September 2007 for the £75m development of College facilities and mixed use regeneration. The scheme involved the construction of new state-of-the-art facilities for Hastings College at Station Plaza, Hastings and at Ore Valley, Rother.

Summary

The site at Station Plaza features a wide range of 21st century vocational training and academic learning environments, including a new sixth Form Academy. The site also includes a learning centre as well as plans to deliver circa 200 student accommodation dwellings, underground parking and a primary care health facility and retail space let to Sainsbury’s. At Ore Valley, a 5,900 m² business and technology centre with engineering and construction workshops will be built.

The Station Plaza site is adjacent to Hastings train station, which brought about complex negotiations with Network Rail. John Laing acted as an interface with Network Rail in overcoming challenges relating to parking facilities for railway staff, along with construction related issues of working adjacent to operational railway lines, in which we have a wealth of experience.

Partnering

The development of the new College facilities was made possible by the John Laing and Gladedale Joint Venture, which was committed to developing the surplus sites. The sites compromise a mixture of rundown college buildings, car parking and abandoned warehouses. The finished scheme compromises a mix of new BREEAM Excellent college buildings, PCT facilities and circa 200 student accommodation dwellings on the Station Plaza site and in excess of 150 dwellings on the associated sites.

Construction work began on the college buildings in September 2007 and the college opened at the end of 2009. The development is seen as a catalyst for the regeneration of Hastings town centre. John Laing’s involvement in this project allows the college to acquire a larger, more sophisticated facility far in excess of that which would have been available through standard methods of funding.

Ongoing activity

Sussex Coast College is now in occupation of two new state-of-the-art education facilities. John Laing and Gladedale are jointly developing the college’s former sites and are working on the opportunity of locating student accommodation for a higher education institute alongside the new college facilities at Station Plaza.