CONTRACTORS will begin work on a multi-million development at Sunderland College next month.
BAM Construct has been given the job of building two new academies at Bede Campus.
Some £11million of the college’s development fund will be used to improve sports and art facilities at the Durham Road site.
Several buildings will be demolished to be replaced by a new sports centre and visual and performing arts complex.
The 1,205-metre² sports centre will include a four-court sports hall, fitness suite, sports science laboratory, classrooms and changing facilities. The three-storey visual and performing arts building will have a performance hall, dance and drama studios, music, photography and media classrooms, recording studios, and art facilities.
Work will include landscaping the surrounding area, widening roads and resurfacing the car park.
The development will promote environmental sustainability and include features such as locally sourced materials, photovoltaic panels, air source heat pumps and some natural ventilation.
BAM Construct director Andrew Warwick said: “We are delighted to be building these important facilities for Sunderland College.
“The buildings will provide state-of-the-art teaching and learning spaces for Sunderland, as well as making the Bede Campus more aesthetically pleasing and practical.
“We will also be working to ensure the project benefits the local environment, economy and community.”
The college says the investment reflects its commitment to providing the best quality learning environment possible for its thousands of students.
A new engineering building will also be built at another of the college’s campus’.
Principal Anne Isherwood, said: “This is a very exciting time for Sunderland College.
“We are all looking forward to watching the new buildings take shape.
“The facilities will be fantastic and existing and future students will reap the benefits of this investment in quality.
“It is never easy to find the money for such ambitious plans but we are determined to create a college that offers the best possible learning experience to students.
“Having sports and performing arts academies will add to our already impressive offer, which includes a vast range of vocational and A Level courses for full and part time learners as well as excellent pass and student satisfaction rates.
“Construction work is due to start in early 2013, with the new academies due to open in September 2014.”