BUSINESS will be booming at Huddersfield University’s new department building.
The as yet untitled £16.5 million business school had its topping out ceremony yesterday, completed by Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire Dr Ingrid Roscoe.
The new building lies between Firth Street and the Huddersfield Narrow Canal, and is set to be ready for students in September.
It marks the latest phase of a £150m works programme, which has seen £80m invested over the past 10 years and plans for a further £70m over the next seven.
The man who will move into the department is Dean of the Business School, Professor Chris Cowton.
He said: “This ceremony marks another step toward moving in which we are all looking forward to.
“It will do a number of things and law will be brought into the building.
“It will give our students a state-of-the-art facility and be more than just classrooms. It is a place where people can interact and work throughout.”
The design incorporates an inside “street” with areas where students can sit and chat, as well as a cafe.
Prof Cowton added: “It gives a chance for interaction between staff and students as well as a place to work through ideas in a less formal environment.
“We will be moving in in summer and operating from the start of the academic year in September 2010.”
The construction of the 7,200 Sq m department will have taken 12 months after a year-and-a-half of planning and consultation.
Despite the recession the project also marked a period of success for local businesses.
Huddersfield’s Johnson Wellfield Quarries, Elland Steel Structures and another town business, Dortech Architectural Systems, were the key players in its creation.
Dortech’s James Sutherland said: “We worked on the glazing in the roof, windows, entrance and facade.
“It’s significant for us because it’s the second large scale project carried out at the university, the first being the Creative Arts building which won design awards. Also we are two miles from the university, we employ 60 people in the area and our glass is manufactured at Dualseal on Leeds Road.
“It’s our hope that our employees can undertake courses in the same building we worked on.”
Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire Dr Ingrid Roscoe took a tour of the four floor site along with construction bosses and architects.
She said: “This is a really exciting building, it’s a design that combines with the old building so harmoniously.
“It’s important that locally I believe 120 people have been employed so that’s a tremendous help to the local community.
“The university maintains wonderful links in the business world both at home and abroad and I believe that this new building can act as a flagship.”
The department will include a mock court room for Law students on the top floor, with views of the canal from a roof level terrace.