The YUSU Student Centre will undergo an estimated £2.2million expansion over the summer holiday period.
The Student Centre will remain the same location in James College, but extend forward into the car park space, and backwards towards the current McQ’s bar. McQ’s will be relocated to the Roger Kirk Centre for the start of the next academic year.
“The expansion is part of a range of work taking place to give the south-side of campus a much needed facelift as well as making The Student Centre more than just an administrative building,” stated YUSU President, Tim Ngwena.
YUSU will be contributing £500,000 towards the project, from their reserve fund for capital projects, with the University funding the rest of the expansion.
The design of the building is aimed to make it “easier for students to see their officers both part time and full time”, and to relocate YUSU’s administration, making the Student Centre more of a social space to be used by individuals and student groups for activities such as committee meetings.
It will include improved bicycle storage, gender neutral toilets, baby changing facilities, improved cycle storage and a larger taxi pick up point outside the Centre.
“We looked at a 2 floor proposal but this would have needed an entirely new building. The current foundations and the substation and gas centre made it too costly an option and so it was phased out of the design proposals which was unfortunate because we could have made more ideal usage of the ground floor,” explained the YUSU President.
YUSU have confirmed that they have been approached about running McQ’s from within the Roger Kirk Centre. Although YUSU cannot comment as plans are still being finalised, Ngwena has said that future arrangements for McQ’s “will make the offering on the southside of campus more holistic from our perspective.”
“With plans for the coffee provision to stay open till late and YUSU to run the bar [McQ’s, from within the Roger Kirk], we feel we will give an offering that will improve the student experience.”