GMI Secures £27m Leeds City College construction contract


Libby Whitaker-Keating

GMI Construction Group Ltd has secured a £27m contract to expand Leeds City College’s new Mabgate campus

The campus is already home to the college’s School of Events, Enterprise and Employability, as well as studio space for Leeds Conservatoire, which are both members of Luminate Education Group.

The project will transform the once derelict site into around 70,000 sq ft of educational space which will enhance the teaching and learning experience.

The development will create new learning spaces while contributing to the regeneration of the area and providing much-need community resources.

The initial stage of the project, which started last month, includes the partial demolition of existing buildings fronting onto Mabgate, which will make way for the construction of a new five-storey campus for University Centre Leeds and a new building for Leeds City College’s English for speakers of other languages (ESOL) provision, currently the Enfield Centre, which will both operate as educational facilities.

As part of the construction of the ESOL building, Leeds-based GMI will also build a new atrium cafeteria, which will be located between the new building and the existing converted warehouse space, which is the hub of the Mabgate Centre, providing eco-friendly open-plan learning spaces and specially designed classrooms.

In addition to the construction of the new facilities, GMI will also undertake the refurbishment of the historic building, Studio 24, which is a popular arts and events space located within a former industrial building.

Chris Weathers, Group Commercial Director at GMI Construction, said: “We are exceptionally proud to have secured this project to support the expansion of this Leeds City College centre and the regeneration of this part of our home city.

“It also represents part of our strategy to further grow our presence in public sector construction.”

“We have a strong track record of public sector delivery, not only in Yorkshire, but our other regions including the North East, and securing this scheme further demonstrates our capabilities to support significant developments that will have a positive impact on communities.”

David Warren, Group Vice Principal of Development at Luminate Education Group, said: “These new developments at Mabgate form part of our commitment to supporting our members to deliver outstanding opportunities for learners. Both new buildings will replace old buildings in poor condition and we are delighted that significant funding was provided to us by the Department for Education through their capital transformation funding programme.

“The University Centre Leeds building will replace its current site at Park Lane, providing students with cutting-edge facilities, while the new space for Leeds City College’s in-demand ESOL provision will allow even more adults and young people to access vital English skills, in this expanded space.

“We’re pleased that this next phase of development consolidates our plans to support the regeneration of this up-and-coming part of Leeds, and hopefully attracts further investment in the area.”