Plans for new Heslington East building approved

The new building will be called The Piazza and will feature catering facilities and study spaces

City Of York Council has approved planning permission for the University to construct a brand new building on Heslington East.

Image: University of York

Image: University of York

The building will be known as The Piazza, and will be located just south of Langwith College.

The £25m building project will provide catered accommodation on Heslington East for the first time, as catering facilities will be included in the new building.

It will see roughly 100 rooms within each college on Heslington East become catered rent. All rooms on Heslington East are currently self-catered.The Piazza will also add study space to Heslington East with seminar rooms, a lecture theatre and conference facilities.

The addition of The Piazza is the latest development in the long line of construction on Heslington East which in recent years has seen the addition of Constantine College and the York Sport Village.

Speaking of the approval of the plan for The Piazza, David Duncan, University Registrar and Secretary told Nouse: “We are delighted that the Council has given its approval for the construction of The Piazza building (subject to some further work in funding and contractual arrangements).

“The building already has planning approval, and we hope to complete it for use from late 2016. Encompassing teaching, study, catering and social facilities, it will represent a major enhancement of provision for students living and studying on Heslington East.”

Sam Maguire, YUSU President, told Nouse that he is “excited” by the introduction of The Piazza as it will “deliver much needed catering, social and study space on Heslington-East.”

He added: “It will also include the introduction of an ethically sound foundation programme which will be very interesting. I have also asked the University that we consider in the building plans to consider whether we can provide flat floor provision in the building as that is what our clubs and societies have asked for.”

Tara Annison, Chair of Goodricke College, commenting on her role with the plans of The Piazza said: “It’s fantastic to see the University further their plans towards The Piazza building.

“Planning permission has already been approved and there have been several discussions regarding The Piazza building and the best possible use of the space, which I’ve been involved in.”
She went on to say: “The University now understand the need for study space, catering provision and recreational space on Heslington East, all of which will hopefully be solved with these new plans.”

Meanwhile, Alex Byron, a second-year Langwith student, told Nouse: “I think it’s great to see the university continuing to invest in the new campus, giving us the additional services, like study space that we need.

“It will also be good to see more students coming over and using the campuses’ services, showing that we’re more than just a few nice buildings, but rather an amazing, growing community.” Byron added: “This, along with the proposed health-centre and shop, shows that Heslington East is the place to be!”

Other future construction projects on Heslington East include the new basketball courts as well as plans for the construction of a purpose-built Junior Common Room for Langwith College.

Speaking on the overall development of Heslington East, a second -year English Literature student told Nouse: “I think the introduction of Constantine College this year has really made a big difference to the general atmosphere on Heslington East.

“Having more students on this side of the University because of the greater number of accommodation blocks has helped Heslington East become more lively.

“Hopefully, the building of more facilities like The Piazza will convince more students to come to Heslington East.

“When I’ve been speaking to other students around the University, it seems like Heslington East has a reputation for being really quiet and dull. I think the ongoing development will really help to change people’s minds about Heslington East.”

As well as the continuous development of Heslington East, there are also plans in place to develop parts of the Heslington West campus.

In addition to the proposed construction of an on-campus nightclub, Maguire has revealed that parts of Derwent, James and Vanbrugh will be demolished and rebuilt over the next 10 years.

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