University of Kent, Sibson Building

Main Contractor
University of Kent
Penoyre & Prasad
£ 270,000
Project Information

What They Said: Creating the Sibson Building was another example of our track record for delivering campus upgrades in university environments, following similar facilities for universities that include Cambridge, Bournemouth, Birmingham City, West London and Brighton.

New centrepiece

The challenge was to provide a new five storey academic building on a split level site with 150 linear metres of ground retaining sacrificial sheet piles. It also had to include 150 offices, Seminar rooms, 3 lecture Theatres, a double height Atrium space and fully functioning Kitchen and dining area.

No problem!

We delivered a home to the Kent Business School and the School of Mathematics, Statistics & Actuarial Science. By bringing together academics, students, researchers and administrative staff from these schools into a modern new facility, the hub has given the university approximately 8,000m² of state-of-the-art space that will help attract the best people in the competitive higher education sector.

The Head of Estates for the University, Peter Czarnomski, stated:

“This is the best construction project I have EVER worked on!”

Planning for the future

The client appointed Willmott Dixon for the following reasons:

  • extensive university track-record
  • know-how for live environment working
  • social investment programme for community
  • local team with impeccable construction credentials

The facilities will allow the university to develop their current activities and strengthen their position in the higher education sector. The space includes 5,600m² of academic and research workspaces, administration and reception areas for the two schools and 2,350m² of teaching and learning spaces. It also includes three lecture theatres, seminar rooms and MBA and IT suites.


Skills plan

Willmott Dixon aim to provide 100 working weeks for apprentices, as well as six student placements, 300 workshops and 360 site visits during the construction phase. This is part of our community engagement programme with the university.

Roger Forsdyke, managing director for the Southern Home Counties:

”This hub will give each of the departments their own distinct learning area that will attract students and academics keen to develop their knowledge and research using these high-tech facilities. Importantly, we’re bringing our experience of higher education and working in live environments on major hub projects to ensure we create a centrepiece that will provide a learning environment for many generations to come.”

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