INFRASTRUCTURE

Nottingham Trent’s enterprise centre gets green light

SOURCE: Nottingham Trent University
Nottingham Trent University’s (NTU) plans for a brand-new Enterprise Innovation Centre (EIC) have been given the green light.

Nottingham Trent University’s (NTU) plans for a brand-new Enterprise Innovation Centre (EIC) have been given the green light, with the university expecting to start tendering the city-centre project soon.

The state of the art facility will be a base for academic and business collaboration, teaching and research, as well as acting as a hub for business support for local SMEs and startups.

The aim is to create a dynamic learning environment where student and graduate entrepreneurs, other small growing businesses and larger companies can interact and collaborate with academics, professional services staff and each other; all of whom will benefit from working closely in partnership with the university.

It will be developed on a brownfield site in the centre of Nottingham and will house 2,000 sq metres of internal floor space.

The new development is part of the university’s wider plan to inspire innovation and will act as an extension of the existing enterprise support hub, The Hive.

“The EIC will form a major building block of the University’s Enterprise Action Plan and will be a key enabler of many elements within the University’s strategic plan – Creating the University of the Future,” a statement from NTU read.

“The EIC will provide the focus for all the University’s enterprise activities and will create a dynamic learning environment where student and graduate entrepreneurs can interact and collaborate with academics, researchers, small growing businesses and larger companies.

“The development is designed to accommodate university startups and spin-outs, as well as in-movers from elsewhere attracted by the high-quality space and business support offer.”

The ambitious enterprise plan has already yielded some impressive results for NTU. Since 2001, The Hive has helped more than 400 startup companies. Almost 70 percent of those businesses are still trading and prospering today.

Their successes have been recognised by Santander Universities who recently awarded NTU’s centre for enterprise and entrepreneurship with a grant of £75,000 (US$98,000).

The new EIC is designed by Evans Vettori, a Derbyshire-based architectural practice specialising in bespoke education projects. The company has a longstanding relationship with the university, having designed the NTU’s centrepiece teaching pavilion in 2015, and the Environment Centre in 2017 – due for completion this year.