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Strategies for improving the FE College Estate

19 Oct 2022
Estates & Facilities Management Stage

Advancing quality in the FE Estate - Stephen Hill, Lea Design Advisor FE, Department for Education & Jennifer Singer, Capital Programme Design Advice Lead  – schools and colleges, Department for Education

Good quality projects are vital to shaping a sustainable college estate - environmentally, socially and economically. This presentation reflects on the principles that the DfE has established to support colleges as places that are not only financially viable and support net zero carbon targets but also offer long term value for the students and staff who use them. 

We will present an overview of recent college projects across major capital programmes, highlighting some of the risks and opportunities that should be considered in future capital projects and demonstrating improvements in the development of the overall estate.

How to futureproof an FE estate - Rav Cheema,  Senior Associate, LocatED

The FE sector has undergone major changes in the last decade. Digital innovations have provided new avenues for learners to access education and learning opportunities, and a substantial proportion of the FE estate is in poor/declining condition in the context of the UK’s legal commitments to achieve net zero carbon and biodiversity net gain. While every college is different, it’s never been more important that they all have an estate that is fit for purpose and able to facilitate the delivery of a wide range of curricula to support the national skills agenda both now and in the future.

Reviewing a campus to create an efficient model - John Ridgett, Associate Director, Atkins

Capital City College Group (CCCG) is London’s largest further education college group, providing exceptional education and training for students, business clients and other stakeholders. The group comprises the Westminster Kingsway College (WKC); City and Islington College (CANDI); and the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL) with an estate comprising of nearly 100,000 square metres across ten sites/campuses.

The talk would focus first on providing an overview of how the estates strategy was developed by Peter Marsh Consulting (PMc) and the subsequent masterplan by Atkins and MCMa. The estates strategy examined the condition and size of the estate; reviewed the current and future spaces needs and considered options to ‘right size’ the estate to create a more efficient campus, reduce operating costs and generate a future revenue stream from surplus assets.
Next the talk would look at how the masterplan subsequently gave physical form to the strategy looking to address specific site opportunities and constraints as well as an overall common CCCG approach.

The study was a collaboration of PMc, Atkins and MCMa and included the use of GIS analysis by Atkins R+I team to support the identification of site opportunities.
The talk will be of particular interest to larger FE College Groups in how to structure a review of their estate post mergers.


Mike Lea, Head of Planning - Capital Directorate - Department for Education
Jennifer Singer, Head of Capital Programme Advisory – schools and colleges - Department for Education
Stephen Hill, Lead Design Advisor - Department for Education
Rav Cheema, Senior Associate - LocatED
John Ridgett, Associate Director - AtkinsRéalis



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