Strathclyde University secures funding for research centre

Strathclyde University has secured European funding for the construction of its Technology and Innovation Centre.

The offer of £6.7m from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) will contribute to funding the construction of the centre, which the university said is bringing academics together with international industrial partners to pursue solutions to global challenges.

The 25,000m² centre, which will open in 2014, will be sited alongside Scottish Enterprise’s new Industry Engagement Building.

The university said that the ERDF funding application was submitted to the European Commission, under the low-carbon/sustainability programme, to complete the funding of the £89m development.

The Scottish Funding Council is contributing £15m to the programme, Scottish Enterprise is contributing up to £11m as part of Scotland’s International Technology and Renewable Energy Zone (ITREZ) project and the university is providing £57m.

The announcement of the funding followed the confirmation that Lend Lease has been appointed as contractor for the Technology and Innovation Centre building project.

The company, which was awarded the contract following a single-stage competitive tender submission, is due to begin work on the site later this month.

Under the terms of the contract, 10 per cent of the workforce on the project will be recruited from apprenticeship programmes.

Jim McDonald, Strathclyde University’s principal professor, said: ‘The Technology and Innovation Centre will be the fullest realisation to date of our work as a leading international technological university.

‘With our partners in business and industry, we are seeking breakthroughs to deal with energy demands, climate change, global health challenges, a testing economic climate and the need for more energy-efficient, more advanced technology.’

The Technology and Innovation Centre is Strathclyde University’s single biggest investment in research capacity and has attracted financial backing from Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Funding Council. Its founding industry partners are SSE, ScottishPower and the Weir Group.