• Client:
    University of Leeds
  • Location:
    Leeds
  • Contract Value:
    £1,750,000

Public Realm, University of Leeds

The University of Leeds planned to enhance the key public realm spaces situated within the main campus. The University Square lies within the heart of the University of Leeds campus and connects a number of key routes and spaces which form the hub of the campus environment.

The surrounding site is an active and fully functional University Campus. Adjacent buildings to the University Square had to remain occupied and fully operation throughout the duration of the works. The works were undertaken in two distinct phases:

Installation of bespoke street furniture

Phase 1a (University Square) was carried out during the spring semester and summer break and comprised high quality hard landscaping works, with street furniture and installation of a bespoke feature seating wall. All seating comprised stainless steel material and hardwood. Remedial repairs were made to the Grade II Listed iron gates, external lighting was mounted onto existing buildings using a modern efficient lighting system. Our new company requirement specifies that we use high quality LED lights in our street lamps as these offer the client long term benefits such as longer life and a lower energy consumption than traditional lighting. We undertook re-modeling of the main entrance steps and doors to the Student Union building. Remedial drainage repairs and re-alignment of the existing drainage system were also carried out.

Provision and installation of floor-scaping works which may include Yorkstone Paving or equivalent.

Phase 1b (University Road and Great Hall Square) was carried out during the autumn semester and comprised hard landscaping with high quality granite paving including a new car park, external lighting mounted onto existing buildings using a modern efficient lighting system. The location of the site meant that all materials were chosen to match the high status of the location as Great Hall Square hosts all of the Universities most prestigious events. The granite paving was completed using the highest quality material. Repairs and alteration works were also carried out to a listed building.

After phase 1b, works began to refurbish an existing water feature on another University site. The cooling pad required design and build works to refurbish and maintain the feature. We created decking next to the cooling pad which the University was then to build a new café/restaurant upon.

Installation of tree pits and associated landscaping

In both phases, soft landscaping works were carried out with mature trees planted in key areas to greatly enhance appearance and make the areas more inviting. In phase 1b, works included the construction of a new lawn area for summer functions and remedial drainage repairs and re-alignment of the existing drainage system were carried out alongside the demolition of a Portakabin.

One of the main challenges as part of the design was to ensure student safety out-of-hours. The scheme was designed to promote fluid movement for both students and cyclists whilst complying with all DDA guidelines.  Lighting was designed to ensure that all spaces were overlooked and any shadowed areas of the campus were eradicated.  The coordination with the client and our supply chain was a key element to delivering the Universities requirements.