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Wednesday 01 November 2017

Contractor appointed to build £14m research centre

Sheffield Hallam University has appointed BAM Construction to build its £14million, world-leading Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre (AWRC).

Building of the AWRC is scheduled to start in February 2018 and it will form the centrepiece of the Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park (OLP).

Delivered by Sheffield Hallam University in partnership with Legacy Park Ltd, the AWRC is set to become the most advanced research and development centre for health and physical activity in the world. The key facility is supported by UK Government, who has committed £14 million of funding to the project.

Designed by HLM Architects, the Centre will have facilities such as a 7.5m high indoor laboratory, 3rd generation pitch with cameras and tracking instruments, 3D biomechanical and gait analysis and scanning, a manufacturing workshop, MRI, CT, ultrasound, body composition measurement and physiological testing and a technology demonstration hub.

The primary aim of the AWRC is to create innovations that will 'improve the health of the nation', tackling key issues such as static levels of physical activity, rising obesity and mental health whilst also attracting new jobs and investment to the region.

It will feature indoor and outdoor facilities for 70 researchers to carry out world-leading research on health and physical activity in collaboration with the private sector. It will form a key part of the City Region's Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District (AMID) – a 2,000 acre centre of excellence for innovation-led research and industrial collaboration. 

The AWRC will undertake research focused upon taking services and products from concept to market, using the intellectual property, products and knowledge developed in the centre to generate both wealth and employment opportunities.

Mark Swales, director of estates and facilities at Sheffield Hallam University, said: "We are delighted to confirm BAM as our contractor to build what promises to be an impressive building. Our estate portfolio already provides high-quality teaching and learning spaces for our staff and students and the AWRC will add to this and allow us to conduct world-leading research that will improve the health of populations across the globe."

Kelvin Pollard, construction director for BAM, said: "This scheme renews our successful partnership with the University. BAM's strength in the higher education market is evident across our record in Yorkshire.

"We've also got a long-term commitment in Sheffield where we have contributed a lot to the City's skyline and built environment. This fascinating new scheme will demand many skills from the construction team, and a very close understanding between ourselves, the University and all of the team.

"We are very excited to bring our expertise to its creation, and as ever, will use the opportunity of the build itself to add something back for the community around it."

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