Frequently asked questions

Please get in touch with our team if you have any queries or wish to give feedback - northpark-project@exeter.ac.uk

Why are we investing?

Within the HE sector we are experiencing a shift in the research funding landscape toward tackling multi-disciplinary research challenges. To ensure we are able to remain competitive globally, we need to provide the space to grow our multi-disciplinary institutes, develop and build new partnerships in research and education, continue to evolve our world class student experience, and support the planned growth in student numbers. This building will provide the space and cutting-edge facilities to support the research and education activities that underpin our global ambition and that will help to define our success in the future.

Project North Park is a significant investment in our future position globally. The project is funded by the University’s capital strategy which also includes investment in new and existing buildings across our campuses in Penryn, St Luke’s and Streatham. Many of Exeter’s UK competitor group have already invested in similar research and teaching facilities that will be operational in the next few years. This building will create an attractive prospect for future world class academics, high calibre students and significant research and education partners who want to come to Exeter because of the access to unique research synergies and digitally enabled, research inspired teaching that will sit within the building.

This building will contribute to addressing the issue of office space on campus. It will provide the opportunity for institutes and research groups to be co-located in the same building, providing them with a focal point and identity they currently lack as well as space to expand. This will then free up their current office space and allow it to be repurposed.

Curriculum 2021 is supporting the introduction of interactive and flexible teaching styles which include small group teaching, blending online and face to face learning; delivering more opportunities for experiential learning using scenarios and project work. The teaching facilities that will be provided in the new Project North Park building will be designed to support this activity, and in this way North Park will enable and increase this style of learning. To ensure that the two projects are aligned, the Project North Park education work stream includes academic colleagues who are also closely involved in Curriculum 2021. They will ensure the building is designed and equipped to support the future direction of teaching at Exeter.

Will everyone be able to use this building?

Everyone will be welcome to use this building. There will be study space and collaboration areas for events which can be used by colleagues, students, University partners and members of the public. We want to create a space where people can come together to share ideas and innovate.

There will be opportunities to feedback your views on many aspects of the building including event spaces, social/study areas, the café, access to the building and the layout of external areas. We will share designs with all colleagues and students, and get feedback via drop in sessions and through the website.

We want to bring together institutes and research groups in the building to produce innovative research methods and methodology that will drive ground breaking research. Data and data science will be at the heart of innovation in analytical approaches. We will also explore the interface between HASS and STEMM perspectives, looking to enhance our understanding of global challenges by bringing the two together. This will deliver our next level of research power building toward REF 2025.

We want the building to be where world class research exists at all levels from initial conversations to fully fledged partnerships; developing relationships with industry, regional Enterprise Partnerships to global academic communities. The feel is of a fluid flow of ideas and exchange of perspectives across all disciplines. In this way we will deepen existing relationships as well as build new.

We want those in the building to not only collaborate with each other but also be outwardly facing creating a community of ideas across academia, our students and the wider public both physically and through digitally enabled means. In this way we extend our public engagement.

We want a space where our students find a rich source of inspiration through courses informed by our research and taught using approaches and facilities that reflect the latest education practice. This will include flexible, small group teaching enabled by the latest digital technology.

Co-located with state of the art teaching facilities, the building will provide extensive study spaces for individual and group study in a variety of different formats, alongside catering facilities and self-service areas to enable students to feel they are at the heart of a world class research institution.

The building will also create an exciting focal point for our postgraduate students. We want to build a cohesive and collaborative postgraduate community alongside participation in doctoral training centres, and create an exciting hub for PhD students with a dedicated support information point at the heart.

The building will contribute to the provision of teaching space and will be able to support flexibility of teaching hours, however we do not envisage any changes to the standard teaching day. The University teaching day is planned not just around the space available on campus but also the availability of students and academics. The current teaching day allows the University to deliver programmes with a wide variety of module choices. This building will be able to support this delivery.

There will be a strong element of arts and culture within the building to support creativity and innovation. There will be the provision of space and facilities to host events, display artefacts and support activities that encourage engagement and that illustrate the research and teaching themes across the University. By providing time and space for provocative and purposeful engagement across and between different disciplines, communities and audiences, the building will facilitate new approaches to research and enhance the student experience.

The building will also provide a place of engagement with the city of Exeter and the wider region, for individuals, communities, institutions and companies, and by doing so will play a leading role in the social, cultural and economic life of the area.

When will I see things changing?

We recognise that parking is a concern for everyone and therefore would like to reassure colleagues that every effort will be made to minimise disruption during construction.

Work on Car Park B will commence in June 2019 and be complete by September 2019. Once this work is complete, Car Park D will be closed and people will be able to use the new facility at Car Park B.

Visit our car parking page for more information regarding the location and proposed design of the car park.

It is recognised that work to construct the East Park residences, extend Car Park B and then construct the building on Car Park D represents a significant amount of building work occurring to the east of the campus. To minimise the disruption, plans are being made to phase the work to avoid overlapping the projects. In line with the University’s Estates procedures, each project will have detailed mitigation oversight and the activities across all sites will be co-ordinated centrally to ensure they collectively do not have a significantly adverse impact on activities on campus. The safety and wellbeing of our staff, students and visitors is a priority.