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Work starts on £80m Creative Arts building


Work has begun on Leeds Beckett University’s £80m Creative Arts building - a new hub for creative education in the city.

Creative Arts building by day

Image: An artist's impression of the completed building.

The state-of-the-art facility will be home to the university’s School of Film, Music and Performing Arts, plus the fashion department. It will be packed with specialist facilities including a performance theatre and 220-seat Dolby Atmos movie cinema, as well as specialist studios for fashion, music, film and television.

dance students

Image: Dance students, Ciara Clayton and Tom Scholey.

As the flagship development in the new Innovation District in the city, the Creative Arts building will sit in the heart of Leeds’ Civic Quarter. It is sited on Portland Way, opposite the Rose Bowl - the university’s Business School.

The Innovation District is a partnership between Leeds Beckett University, the University of Leeds, Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and Leeds City Council. The partnership aims to attract new research facilities and drive economic development and regeneration. It will provide a range of quality work spaces, create new development opportunities and provide upmarket housing to attract and retain skilled workers in the city.

Professor Peter Slee, Vice Chancellor of Leeds Beckett University, said:

“Through the outstanding creative education and training we supply to 1,800 students per year, the innovative research and knowledge exchange we pursue within the industry and through the opportunities we provide for networking, Leeds Beckett University is a major contributor to the success of the cultural and creative industries of Leeds and the “creative conurbation” which is developing in the greater North. Our £80m investment in world leading facilities in film, television, music, fashion, dance, drama and performance, will further enhance our positive social, cultural and economic impact.”

ground breaking one

Image: Ground-breaking from L to R; Andrew Fryer, Dean of the School of Film, Music and Performing Arts; Professor Peter Slee, Vice Chancellor of Leeds Beckett University; Megan Robinson, Student's Union President; David Lowen, Chairman of Board of Governors and Dr Lisa Stansbie, Dean of  the School of Art, Architecture and Design.

The Creative Arts building is due for completion in September 2020. It is the first new development in a £200m programme of investment at Leeds Beckett over the next five years which will see the university’s two campuses transformed.

The iconic building is being delivered by developer Downing and has been designed by Hawkins\Brown. The main contractor on the scheme is George Downing Construction.


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