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£100m secured for UCL East as part of East Bank

5 June 2018

UCL has secured £100 million from the Government towards the capital cost of building our new campus, UCL East.

UCL East - Mayor of London

The final confirmation of the funding was announced as we showcased UCL East and our current east London projects during a launch event hosted by the Mayor of London to unveil the vision for East Bank (previously the Cultural and Education District).

East Bank will be a new destination for London with world-class culture and education at its heart. As one of the founding partners – along with UAL’s London College of Fashion, Sadler’s Wells, and the V&A including a partnership with the Smithsonian Institution – UCL is receiving the majority share of the Government’s £151m contribution to the project.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Great cities are defined by their ambition as much as their achievements – East Bank is the most ambitious new project of its kind for decades. I have made culture a top priority, and as London’s centre of gravity has moved east, I’m delighted that we’re placing culture and education at the heart of this development and the Olympic legacy.”

This is another significant milestone for UCL East and follows other news that the BBC is joining the list of world-class culture and education institutions that will form East Bank, by creating a new home for the BBC Symphony Orchestra & Chorus and BBC Singers.

As the partners unveiled their building plans, the Mayor made a commitment that at least 50 per cent of new homes across the remaining development sites on the Park will be affordable.

“My vision for East Bank is one where everyone, regardless of their background, can access world-class culture on their doorstep. East Bank will inspire more young Londoners to take up creative careers and transform the communities of east London,” Mayor Khan added.

Professor Michael Arthur, UCL President & Provost, said: “As one of the world’s leading universities, we address many of the most pressing global challenges of our time. UCL East will take this one step further.”

“Our new campus will bring together seven UCL faculties to generate radical and innovative research and teaching programmes. These will range from robotics, artificial intelligence and media, to innovative finance, global health leadership, advanced propulsion and sustainable cities.”

“UCL East captures our commitment to creating a diverse, open and accessible site, with spaces for making and advanced manufacturing, object-based learning and conservation, and performances and exhibitions. Our staff will work with, and for, the benefit of local communities.”

To celebrate projects already underway on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, the work of the UCL’s Global Disability Innovation Hub (GDI Hub) was presented at the event, alongside other projects by other East Bank partners.

The GDI Hub, launched in 2016, was born out the legacy of the London 2012 Paralympic Games and is a leading voice on disability innovation and design, developing impactful low-cost solutions with the potential to make a global impact. Currently located at Here East, it is the first UCL East activity on site.

It is led by UCL in collaboration with UAL’s London College of Fashion, V&A, Sadler’s Wells, Loughborough University London, Leonard Cheshire Disability and The Helen Hamlyn Centre For Design.

This year, the GDI Hub launched a new MSc in Disability, Design and Innovation, with full scholarships for disabled students, and became part of a €5 million project to develop wheelchairs that can self-navigate in crowds, with Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park being the demonstrator site.

Dr Catherine Holloway, Academic Director of the GDI Hub and Senior Lecturer at UCL Computer Science, said: “Our multi-partner and truly multidisciplinary approach has brought community partners and start-ups together with academics and businesses to think about disability innovation from a new perspective. We are firmly rooted in east London and from here, we answer research questions and create innovative solutions for disabled people around the world.”

Kamran Malik, CEO of Disability Rights UK, said: “We believe true innovation happens when it is led by disabled people. The GDI Hub is doing this and creating a community of disabled people leading innovation together, working on solutions to remove and overcome barriers to an inclusive society. The GDI Hub brings an academic and scientific approach to problem solving with its unique focus on disability equality.”

East Bank map

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Images

  • UCL President & Provost, Professor Michael Arthur, showing the plans for UCL East to Jake Berry MP and Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, with Professor Paola Lettieri, Dr Catherine Holloway and Simon Cane
  • Map of East Bank