A further step has been taken towards a new ‘state of the art’ campus at the Southern Regional College in Banbridge.
A formal planning application has been lodged seeking demolition of the existing campus building on the Castlewellan Road to make way for the new Further Education building.
In October, former Employment and Learning Minister Dr Stephen Farry signed a £1.9million design contract for the development of three new campuses at Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon.
The Armagh and Banbridge projects will see new campuses being developed on the existing sites while the Craigavon development will replace the Lurgan and Portadown campuses with a single new high quality campus in Craigavon.
A business case for the estates projects was approved by the Department for Employment and Learning and the Department of Finance and Personnel for a capital investment of approximately £90 million by Southern Regional College in new facilities.
A spokesperson for SRC said: “The projects will be taken forward over the next four years and will see the new buildings being delivered in early 2020”.
WYG Management Services Ltd has been appointed to lead the planning process, and public consultation on the plans will take place over the coming weeks.
It is expected that the existing Banbridge campus will remain fully operational during the construction period.
The spokesperson continued: “The goal is to deliver state of the art, fit for purpose accommodation to meet the needs of students and staff and to provide facilities to respond to the emerging needs of employers.”
SRC say the project Represents a positive investment in the region and a legacy for future generations of students.
They hope the completion will create learning environments that inspire students to fulfil their potential.
“The College has an excellent record in both academic and vocational education and training and this will be enhanced through the provision of new first class educational facilities.”