Opening date update: This article has been superseded. Please read our update.
Here at UWE Students' Union, we are getting very excited to think that in less than 18 months time, we'll be getting cosy in our very brand new, purpose-built SU building!
In September 2011, the University Board of Governors raised the old "how do I get to the union building?" question. Faced with a confused answer, the new SU building was rushed to the top of the priority list for the new campus masterplan. In case you're unaware, the UWE Frenchay campus doubled in size a couple of years ago as it purchased the HP estate (where we hold the Freshers Fair, and you might have sat an exam there). It's now time to start building on the 70 additional acres - and we're first in the queue! In the latest revisions of the new campus masterplan, our building will sit in the campus "heartzone" - a bussling square sat on a busy (foot) traffic route between the sustainable transport hub, academic hub, food outlets and the UWE Stadium.
So with the wind behind us, the new students' union building will open well in time for Freshers 2013 - just over a year away! Building work starts September this year, so we are full speed ahead with the design stages. For the architects and town planners amongst us, we are in RIBA Stage C (concept planning). The planning application is in, we've got a good idea what the building will look like, and the concept of it's purpose.
Together: Let's Build A New Students' Union
UWE Students' Union was established in 1971, and the main offices and services are based over four floors of F-block on Frenchay campus. F-block has hardly changed in the 4 decades its been standing and still reflects the brutalist concrete-obesssed architectural style that was common for public buildings in the 60s and 70s.
It might have been on trend in the 70s but in 2012 it just looks like a dull old office block past its use by date. In September 2013, UWESU will for the first time, sit in its very own purpose-built building, in the heart of the new campus.
Now it's time for YOU to get involved by throwing your ideas, comments and feedback into the mix to help build a NEW Students' Union. All details on how to are available on the regularly-updated Let's Build website.