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higher education estates magazine (hee)

hee magazine digital edition - July/August 2017

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The HE market

Universities increase turnover via business driven developments

The UK university sector grew by £2bn in one year, and it annual turnover now equates to £30bn overall, according to the latest figures from the Association of University Directors of Estates (AUDE).

AUDE’s annual report, ‘Higher Education Estates Statistics Report 2016’, which spans the academic year 2014-2015, shows that teaching income had risen by 6% per annum, while income from research increased by 12%. The two largest institutions in the UK each turnover in excess of £1bn per annum.

Estates growth

The university estate equates to 14.3m sqm, which represents an increase of 200,000 sqm on the previous year. During this time, numbers of research students increased by 10,000 and staff numbers increased by 2,000.

Capital expenditure for the year reached a record high of £2.75bn. This growth of 5.6% on the previous year was driven by investment in the estate in the knowledge that staff and students expect high quality and attractive facilities.

The AUDE report reveals university estates continue to expand. Individually, the universities of Manchester, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Oxford and Nottingham all have academic estates (excluding residential accommodation) in excess of 500,000 sqm.

Commercial deals

Universities’ income rose to £1,477 per sqm in 2014/15. For example, the University of Hertfordshire embarked on a strategy to boost income by securing commercial deals with businesses such as Ocado and Regus for office space, as well as commercial leases with bank Santander and the NHS which runs a GP clinic on campus.

Across the sector, examples are documented by AUDE of universities exploiting their estates in order to secure alternative funding streams outside of traditional routes. The University of Sheffield built workshops, laboratories and office space in Catcliffe near the M1 in a business park. The capital expenditure in Sheffield Business Park will deliver 4,000 jobs and generate over £210m per annum to the regional economy when fully developed.

Goals for estates departments

Driving efficiency, reducing costs, improving the estate, raising service levels and increasing the commercial income from the estate remain key areas of focus for estate directors.

Ambitious infrastructure spend plans

In the face of challenging financial conditions, the HE sector wants to invest over £17.8 billion in infrastructure projects over the next four years, according to new figures from HEFCE. If achievable, this would represent an average annual investment of £4.5 billion, 51% higher than the previous four-year average.

Latest news

£177m for nine university and business research projects

£177m for nine university and business research projects  » 

NINE research projects led by UK universities have been awarded funding totalling £177m by HEFCE, in the latest investments through the UK Research Investment Partnership Fund.

Nearly half of students see themselves as customers

Nearly half of students see themselves as customers  » 

NEARLY a half of students (47%) now see themselves as customers of their university, according to a new ComRes survey for Universities UK.

Office for Students’ first ceo appointed  » 

NICOLA Dandridge has been confirmed as the first chief executive of the Office for Students (OfS).

Additional £40m in support of the Industrial Strategy

Additional £40m in support of the Industrial Strategy  » 

THE Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF) is to receive an additional £40m per annum from 2017-18, to boost universities’ capacity to collaborate with businesses, commercialise their research and help to deliver the Government’s Industrial Strategy.

HE sector must be heard during Brexit negotiations

HE sector must be heard during Brexit negotiations  » 

WITH Brexit underway, university leaders believe it is critical for the sector to make itself heard and help shape negotiations and future policy.

The Oculus: a new focal point for the University of Warwick

The Oculus: a new focal point for the University of Warwick  » 

A TEACHING centre named The Oculus which features an impressive 18m tall glazed frontage beneath a dramatic curved laminated timber roof provides a new visual focal point for the University of Warwick.

£96m Centre for Engineering and Physical Sciences at Leeds

£96m Centre for Engineering and Physical Sciences at Leeds  » 

A DETAILED planning application has been submitted for a new £96m science building at the University of Leeds.

Science centre delivered as part of Lincoln’s £130m capital programme

Science centre delivered as part of Lincoln’s £130m capital programme  » 

THE Isaac Newton Building is the new £30m Science Teaching & Research Centre at the University of Lincoln.

Go-ahead for Newcastle’s ten-storey student apartment scheme

Go-ahead for Newcastle’s ten-storey student apartment scheme  » 

PLANNING permission has been awarded by Newcastle City Council for a new, ten-storey student accommodation development on St James’ Boulevard in the city centre.

Other news

Top five HE priorities set out for the next government

Top five HE priorities set out for the next government  » 

SECURING an effective post-Brexit settlement for universities and introducing a new immigration system that welcomes international students and staff are just two of the priorities set out for the next government.

Funding confirmed for EU students for 2018 to 2019

Funding confirmed for EU students for 2018 to 2019  » 

EU STUDENTS applying for university places in the 2018 to 2019 academic year will remain eligible for financial support.

Edinburgh receives £29m funding for biotech  » 

THE Roslin Institute, part of the University of Edinburgh, is to benefit from £29m of UK government money to support the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council’s mission to further scientific knowledge, particularly around controlling infectious diseases.

New chair at AUDE

New chair at AUDE  » 

THE Association of University Directors of Estates (AUDE) has appointed University of Brighton’s Mike Clark as its new chair.

New hub for skills at heart of Nottingham FE plans  » 

NEW COLLEGE Nottingham and Central College are continuing to work towards a formal merger which will create Nottingham College.

Law courts and City trading room at new Bristol Business School

Law courts and City trading room at new Bristol Business School  » 

A £55M project at the University of West England (UWE Bristol) has delivered a new home for the Faculty of Business and Law in the heart of Frenchay Campus.

Birmingham Health Sciences building tops out

Birmingham Health Sciences building tops out  » 

THE finishing touches are being made to Birmingham City University’s new £41m Health Sciences and Education building.

Space for pioneering research projects at Notts campus

Space for pioneering research projects at Notts campus  » 

THE £5.4M RAD (Research Acceleration Demonstration) building on University of Nottingham’s Jubilee Campus is underway.

Housing scheme to fund modernisation of academic facilities

Housing scheme to fund modernisation of academic facilities  » 

A MASTERPLAN being developed for St John’s School of Mission in Bramcote, Nottingham, will enable the college to develop its training programmes for students preparing for a range of Christian ministries within and beyond the church.