Ambitious plans for Northampton College's new building in Daventry will be launched to the local community at public consultation events later this month.
The plans are being developed following the College's successful bid to the South East Midlands Enterprise Partnership (SEMLEP) for £6.5M of funding from the Local Growth Fund for a completely new centre in the town that will offer vocational training for young people and adults.
Having appraised the options since its bid gained approval, the College is developing a planning application to build a completely new centre on its existing site at Badby Road West. This option has been deemed most appropriate to enable the College to retain sports facilities on site, develop an enhanced campus and provide a better learning environment for students.
The government grant was awarded on condition that the College invests match funding from its own resources and to achieve this, an additional planning application will be submitted to re-develop part of the current College site for residential purposes.
Construction is due to start in September 2015 and it is planned that the new centre will open its doors in autumn 2016. The centre will provide places for 700 students, including 200 Apprenticeships, and will focus on developing the skills identified as central to the local economy. Work is now in progress to develop an exciting new curriculum for the centre that will appeal to young people, adults and local businesses.
The College has instructed award-winning architects Pick Everard to design the new buildings and is keen to allow the local community to have their say on the plans as they unfold. In addition, comments will be welcomed on proposals for a potential new housing development on the land which the College plans to sell.
The public consultation exhibition on the housing development aspect of these plans will be open at the College's current location in Badby Road West on:
- Friday, 30 January 2015 between 4pm and 8pm
- Saturday, 31 January 2015 between 9am and 12 noon
Commenting on the proposals, Principal Pat Brennan-Barrett said, 'As a college, our ambition is to be the first choice for training and education in Daventry and our plans demonstrate our ongoing commitment to the town and the local community. We now have exciting plans to share with the community and we hope that local people will come and see our plans for themselves. We want to hear their views on our proposals to help us prepare a detailed planning application'.
It is proposed that the new College campus will be self-contained and designed more efficiently using just 50% of the space of the existing facility.
The project will generate significant benefits not only for the College but also for the town including:
- Fit for purpose facilities so that young people do not need to leave Daventry to access high quality further education
- General and specialist teaching resources equipped with the latest technology
- Resources which are designed to respond to the needs of students and local employers
- Brand new buildings which are most cost effective to maintain and operate
- Retention of green open space and sports pitches
- A more environmentally-friendly and sustainable campus designed to a BREEAM rating of Very Good.