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University of Exeter appoints contractor to build £8.5m research hub

The University of Exeter has appointed Morgan Sindall Construction to build a planned £8.5m research centre.

The university’s new Centre for Resilience in Environment, Water and Waste (CREWW) on its Streatham Campus will act as a shared facility with South West Water.

The organisations are looking to discover solutions to protect the future of water systems in the region and on a global scale.

Once complete the three-storey, 14,000 sq ft building will be equipped with mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) systems in “high-spec” laboratories, as well as state-of-the-art mechanical infrastructure and research equipment.

The project will be Morgan Sindall’s nineteenth development on campus, with the contractor recently completing a new extension to the nearby Harrison building, in order to provide better educational provisions for computer science.

The BREEAM ‘excellent’ rated building will be designed to operate with net zero carbon emission, aided by air source heat pumps and rooftop solar panels.

Morgan Sindall said it would also work towards reducing its own carbon footprint by reusing excavated materials on the backfill of the building and reusing water onsite where possible.

Brian Rice, area director at Morgan Sindall, said the contract would allow it to create job opportunities for local people, with the firm also committing to using a local supply chain for the project.

Mr Rice said: “Having worked extensively on campus, our team and network of supply chain are well versed in the university’s practises and expectations and we know their focus lies in the student experience. We will continue to ensure disruption to students is kept to an absolute minimum by ramping up works during quieter holiday periods and engage where possible through site walks and offering work experience.

“The university ranks highly and we want to continue to do our bit to support that by providing state-of-the-art facilities that exceed student expectations and provide an excellent place of teaching for staff.”

Construction is now underway for a scheduled completion of May 2023.

Morgan Sindall was recently appointed by the University of Gloucestershire to transform a former Debenhams department store in Gloucester into its new city campus.

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