Landscape architect Grant Associates is to develop and deliver phase one of the new public realm for the University of Sheffield. The scheme is set to revolutionise the university's campus, open it up to the public and link it with the city centre.
The campus masterplan, designed by Grant Associates in collaboration with architecture practice Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, sets out the university's plans to create a "unified, sustainable and green" campus over the next 10-15 years.
The aim is to enhance the environment for students, staff, visitors and the wider community, and seamlessly integrate the university with the rest of the city.
New green spaces bringing wildlife and nature into the campus include Arts Tower Court - a landscaped courtyard with a water feature, trees, lawn and cafe. This area will link to Weston Park via a garden terrace.
University Square will be a central meeting space, while St George's Green will feature trees, meadow and hedgerow planting.
There will be improvements for pedestrians and cyclists including crossings, closed roads and bike hubs with 500 secure spaces.
Grant Associates director Keith French said: "From the outset the masterplan has been underpinned by a landscape-led approach. We've set out to transform the public realm, creating a thread of streets, squares, gardens and spaces that will help to link together the east and west campus and to improve the university experience for students, staff and visitors."
He added: "It will also help the university become better integrated with the city and to create a distinctive university quarter."
University of Sheffield director of estates and facilities management Keith Lilley said: "Developing an estate that allows us to provide world-class teaching and learning facilities is a major priority. But so too is the desire to be firmly part of our city and to create a safe and welcoming environment.
"We're proud of the city's heritage and our remarkable history of innovation and determination, and we believe that we have an important role to play in contributing to city vibrancy.
"This masterplan frames our vision by setting out an ambitious approach to improving the quality of the built environment in our part of the city and the spaces that tie the urban architecture together."
"Though one of the original six red-brick universities, the university's urban campus is now characterised by an eclectic range of architectural styles, so it is especially important that the external realm unifies the campus identity. The masterplan identifies potential sites for new university buildings to provide for growth over the next 10-15 years. These new buildings have been strategically located to strengthen existing spaces or shape future spaces, such as a new central University Square."
Hugo Marrack, partner, Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios