Graham gets to the Heart of the matter

Graham Construction has completed building work on the new £27m Heart of the Campus development for Sheffield Hallam University

The keys to the 10,000sqm building were handed over at a ceremony this week, with the university set to move staff and equipment in ahead of opening to students at the end of September. 

Heart of the Campus is home to the university’s Faculty of Development and Society, Student Services Centre, a range of lecture theatres, IT suites, learning spaces and cafes. 

The three-storey building also features the Thomas Van Haaren Moot Court – a mock court for law students named in memory of talented Sheffield Hallam law graduate Thomas Van Haaren, who passed away in January 2014 after a long battle with cancer. 

Representatives from Graham Construction and project manager Turner & Townsend were joined by senior university staff for a tour of the new building. 

Mark Swales, director of estates and facilities at Sheffield Hallam University, said: “We’re delighted with our new Heart of the Campus development which has been handed overonschedule following a great working relationship between the university estates team and GRAHAM as main contractor. 

“This new facility will make a real difference to the experience of staff and students based at Collegiate Campus and is a stunning addition to our campus.” 

A number of environmentally sustainable features have been incorporated into HLM Architect’s building design, including rainwater harvesting tanks, 100 Solar PV panels, under-floor heating and ground source heat pumps. 

Keith Patrick, project director at Graham, said: “We are very pleased to be able to hand over the Heart of the Campus building on time, within budget and with an impeccable health and safety record. 

“This is a very high quality project which has been delivered through Graham expertise in university buildings, a forward-thinking and innovative Estates Team within the University, a proactive and dedicated design team and a strong group of construction and supply chain partners. 

“Only by working in collaboration have we been able to deliver such a fantastic building to the university and to the people of Sheffield. The Heart of the Campus is a fitting name for what will be a first-class learning and community hub for students coming from across the UK and further afield. 

“Throughout the build, Graham remained committed to working with a local supply chain, using subcontractors and suppliers from across Sheffield and South Yorkshire, including Apex Asphalt roofing, New Dec Ltd painters, HLM Architects and consulting engineers Arup. 

“Of the staff on site, around 70% have been employed from the local area – a number of whom were previously unemployed – and we have also provided eight-week work placements to help people boost their skills and CVs.” 

Graham has also completed all of the external landscaping and garden work for the space surrounding the building. 

As part of its commitment to the Considerate Constructors Scheme, Graham worked with the local community to ensure there was minimal disruption during the course of the build, sending out newsletters, speaking with residents to keep them informed of progress and taking preventative measures to avoid any damage to the conservation area environment that the site occupies. 

This project is the second successful Graham project in Sheffield following the development of the Pam Liversidge building for the University of Sheffield, which was completed in early 2014.

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