Planning has been granted for the Computational Foundry building at Swansea University’s new Bay Campus. The Computational Foundry, which is designed by AHR and backed with £17m from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), will be a vibrant and growing community of world-class research leaders drawn from computational sciences, who work together with purpose and impact. The Foundry will work on ensuring that human needs and values are at the forefront of digital innovations and aims to make Wales a global destination for researchers, industrial partners and students.
The 7,400m2 facility will include research and development laboratories, postgraduate and researcher areas, as well as teaching, networking, and inspiration space. It will also feature world-leading experimental set-ups, equipment, devices and prototypes to accelerate innovation.
The Foundry will be split into east and west wings, connected by a glazed central atrium. The two blocks will differ in height, with the west wing reaching six storeys, while the east wing rises to four. The increased height ground floor will accommodate two lecture theatres.
The proposal has been designed in collaboration with advisors from the Prince’s Foundation for Building Community to provide a backdrop to Tennant Place, the heart of the University. The main feature of this elevation will be the ground floor colonnade topped by vertical brick piers which create a regular pattern of recessed windows.
The Computational Foundry building is set to achieve BREEAM ‘Excellent’ accreditation. Gary Overton, Director at AHR, said:
“We are very excited to be moving forward with this project. We hope that the Computational Foundry will transform computer science at Swansea University into a beacon for computing in Wales. The state-of-the-art facilities will allow researchers to carry out world-class research and allow the University to collaborate more closely with industry.”
Professor Matt Jones, Head of the College of Science, who led the bid to bring the multi-million world-class facility to Swansea, said:
“In a world of big data and the internet of things, the Foundry will focus on the “smallness” and preciousness of human life and living. Today’s announcement is an important milestone in our plans to make the region and Wales a global destination for researchers, students and industrial partners who want to change the world for the better.”