13 January, 2009
The University of Salford has signed an agreement for lease with developer Peel Media for a new innovative higher education centre at the heart of the MediaCityUK development in Salford Quays.
The University is the second anchor tenant at MediaCityUK. In 2011, when the first phase of development is complete, it will enjoy a prime waterside location next to the BBC, which has already announced that it is moving five departments (currently based in London) to the site. The new University hub will comprise 100,000 sq ft over four floors and will be linked to the University’s four faculties on the main campus at Peel Park.
With state-of-the-art facilities, it will focus on employer-led and postgraduate learning and research collaboration, and will act as a gateway to the University’s full range of services for its industry and community partners.
The University is already a higher education partner with the BBC, which will relocate BBC Sport, Children’s (including CBeebies), Future Media and Technology, Radio 5 Live, Learning, and all local and network broadcasting currently based in Manchester city centre, to MediaCityUK.
The University’s centre at MediaCityUK will include a broadcast zone, digital media zone, virtual laboratory, digital performance space and creative spaces for use in academic teaching, project-based learning and user-centred design and innovation.
Digital media specialist John Holland, a former Head of Interactive TV and Digital Text Services at the BBC, has been appointed by the University to lead its new initiatives relating to MediaCityUK.
The University already hosts a rich programme of industry events including the prestigious annual media conference ‘TV from the Nations and Regions’ (19 – 20 January 2009). These will be showcased at MediaCityUK alongside events for schools, families and the wider community.
Vice-Chancellor, Professor Michael Harloe said: “There is a New Media revolution happening across the globe, and the University is pioneering a nationally significant development here in Salford.
“Our vision is to create, at the heart of MediaCityUK, ground-breaking ways of engagement for the benefit of our students, our staff and our community and industry partners. We are confident this will become a catalyst for future change within the higher education sector.
“Our MediaCityUK hub will be dedicated to providing world-class learning and research for the 21st century – offering flexible and responsive programmes and producing highly practical industry-relevant research and innovation.
“The centre will make a significant contribution to the development of MediaCityUK and to Salford’s international reputation as a university city which has responsive, cutting-edge educational provision and skills development.”
Andrew Simpson, Managing Director of Peel Holdings and Acting MD of Peel Media, said: “MediaCityUK is shaping an environment for creative talent to network and prosper, and fusing industry excellence, such as the BBC, with academic talent from Salford University.
BBC Director General Mark Thompson said: “I am delighted Salford University have announced they are joining us at MediaCityUK with their new centre alongside the BBC.
"We are committed to forging a new generation of partnerships in the north and across the country’s creative industries. We look forward to working closely with the University to explore ways to boost opportunities and skills and develop new relationships that will benefit the whole industry.
"The University’s presence alongside key parts of the BBC means MediaCityUK will be one of the places where the future of the media industry will be shaped.”
Source: University of Salford