A flagship new city centre building has been drawing inspiration from school pupils and Sheffield-based graffiti artists as it reaches an important stage in its development.
The pupils will work with artists David Cross and Philip Padfields from Treehouse Art to create artwork for the interior of the £30m Sheffield Institute of Education building in Charles Street, which opens in January 2016.
The project was launched at a topping out ceremony for the Sheffield Hallam building, which will provide a home for the University’s teaching and education research, including its Autism Centre.
David, who studied youth work at Sheffield Hallam, said: ‘We have been getting youngsters to create a visual identity for the new building, which will house the next generation of education teaching and thinking.’
The seven-storey building, now at its highest point, features a concertina-effect bridge designed by the University’s honorary doctor Corin Mellor, which will connect it to the University’s Arundel Building.
The innovative design of the building also includes a central walkway through Brown Lane, an existing road on the site, which will be fully enclosed by a glass atrium. The walkway, and the building itself, will be open to the public.
The 9,500 sq m development includes a 300-plus seat lecture theatre, teaching rooms, learning spaces, staff spaces and a cafe.
The Sheffield Institute of Education is the largest teacher-training provider in the Yorkshire & Humber region, and one of the largest in the country. More than 700 new teachers graduate each year, with many staying in on in Sheffield to teach in the city’s schools.
The University has been working with architects Bond Bryan and developers Balfour Beatty on the project.
Professor Sam Twiselton, director of Sheffield Institute of Education, said: ‘Over the past few months we have seen this great commitment to education in teaching in Sheffield come to fruition.
‘Sheffield Hallam’s involvement with teacher training goes back to 1905 when Sheffield Training College admitted its first 90 students so it’s absolutely fantastic that current pupils are helping to define the way education is taught and thought over the next century.’
Dr Iain Garner, head of department for Education, Childhood and Inclusion at Sheffield Hallam, added: ‘This new building places a strong emphasis on partnership working and being a home for the very best education teaching and research, in South Yorkshire and beyond.’
Jon Adams, Balfour Beatty delivery unit managing director, said: “The Sheffield Institute of Education will provide a hub for future learning and at the same time retain a hint to the city’s industrial past with the use of traditional brickwork, Corten steel and the link bridge to the Arundel Building that has been designed by Corin Mellor.”
Bond Bryan’s Matt Hutton, architect and associate director, said: ‘This building represents the final piece in the jigsaw on Arundel Gate and is a fantastic landmark for Sheffield city centre.
‘It’s been a long journey to get to the topping out stage, but it’s a building the whole city can be proud of.’