Imperial's ambitions for its White City Campus have reached a new milestone with the submission of the masterplan for the south of the site.
The White City masterplan, submitted to the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham (LBHF), is the result of a year-long consultation with key stakeholders, including local residents and businesses.
At the heart of the masterplan are proposals to develop flexible buildings and facilities which will co-locate businesses and researchers to support collaboration, innovation, and the sharing of ideas.
It will enable Imperial to expand partnerships with businesses - ranging in size from start-ups to large corporate partners - and other academic bodies, as well as partners in the local community.
Development plots and open outdoor spaces have been designed to integrate with the surrounding area, with the aim of creating attractive and accessible focal points that could be used to host events, science and technology exhibitions, or performances.
The masterplan puts the community at the heart of the development – prioritising flexible public spaces, new pedestrian routes to connect neighbouring areas, and vibrant facilities which will bring together local people, businesses and Imperial’s community of students and researchers.
Further plans for the site, which is located south of the Westway (A40) on Wood Lane, include a hotel, new spaces for retailers, restaurants and cafes, as well as up to 370 new homes.
Professor Neil Alford, Associate Provost (Academic Planning), said: “The White City Campus is an exciting new chapter in the College’s history. We want our campus to be an open, welcoming place that enriches the local area, is sensitive to the needs of our neighbours, and offers exciting new opportunities for business, academia, and local people alike.
“The masterplan for the south site embodies this vision and represents a long term commitment to the White City community. We look forward to engaging further with the community as we take our plans forward”.
The submission comes as Imperial and digital venture builder Blenheim Chalcot announce a joint venture to build “Scale Space”, a 200,000 sq ft new technology and innovation centre, on the south site.
As well as providing space for new, high growth technology companies the £50million Scale Space will house parts of Imperial and many of Blenheim Chalcot’s businesses, which currently include Agilisys, ClearScore, SalaryFinance, Fospha and Modulr.
Welcoming the announcement of the joint venture the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Matt Hancock MP, said: “This ambitious project will help cement London's position as Europe's tech capital and is another vote of confidence in our world-leading digital economy.
“We're determined to make the UK the best place to start and grow a digital business, so it's fantastic to see these two established institutions coming together to help the next generation of innovative talent flourish."
North of the Westway, researchers and businesses are already helping to tackle major global challenges, from preventing the spread of disease to delivering new, sustainable sources of energy.
Several buildings are already either open or under construction on the north site. These include the Translation and Innovation Hub (I-HUB), which opened its doors in October 2016, providing a space for corporate partners, fast-growth and start-up companies to work side-by-side.
The Molecular Sciences Research Hub (MSRH) is set to open later this year - providing a new home for Imperial's Department of Chemistry. The Michael Uren Biomedical Engineering Research Hub – currently under construction - will bring together engineers, scientists and medical researchers to collaborate on new medical technologies.
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