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UPP selected as Preferred Bidder for major Durham University college accommodation project

| 23.05.2024 | 3 minutes read |

UPP, the leading provider of on-campus student accommodation infrastructure in the UK, has been selected to be the Preferred Bidder to develop, in partnership with Durham University, a detailed scheme proposition for the refurbishment of the College of St Hild and St Bede and the development of new college accommodation at the Leazes Road site. 

One of the key drivers for this project for both Durham University and Durham City is to increase the proportion of students living in high quality Durham University owned or managed accommodation. 

UPP is the UK’s only multi-discipline, full-service Design, Build, Fund and Operate (DBFO) company that is dedicated to the Higher Education sector. With over 25 years of experience operating in the sector and having invested over £3.5bn, UPP has a strong track record of delivering next generation campuses at scale. 

Durham University highlighted some particularly important factors in their choice of UPP including: 

  • A strong commitment to a partnership approach in the renovation of Hild Bede 
  • A sympathetic design approach which respects the heritage and parkland aspects of the Leazes Road site 
  • UPP’s extensive market experience 
  • A mature and comprehensive Facilities Management service proposal 
  • A commitment to support the University’s sustainability and Net Zero aspirations 

UPP will now continue to work with Durham University to refine the proposal with the scheme currently scheduled to start in 2025. 

Jeremy Cook OBE, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Colleges and Student Experience), Durham University commented: 

“We are delighted to announce UPP as preferred bidder and look forward to working together to develop a scheme for the redevelopment of the Leazes Road site. 

“The project will seek to rejuvenate The College of St Hild and St Bede on its iconic and beautiful site on the slope of the river Wear, providing excellent accommodation with a first-class student experience for the future. In securing preferred bidder status, UPP is working in partnership with the University to shape exciting plans and state of the art designs for accommodation at the Leazes Road site.” 

Elaine Hewitt, CEO at UPP said:

“UPP is delighted to collaborate on this incredibly important project at Durham University.

This scheme is about respecting, protecting and enhancing the history and heritage of the University for the benefit of future students.

We are excited to co-create an environment that puts student experience at its heart, building on each unique college identity.”

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