Oxford spend £500m on Radcliffe campus site

first_imgOxford University plans to spend half a billion pounds on a radical new plan to create a campus on the site of the old Radcliffe Infirmary.Described as its most ambitious project in recent history, the design is set to be one of the biggest investments in the history of the University, with the site alone costing £45 million.The University scrapped earlier plans to build a “sweeping boulevard” from the site to the University Press building, as this was deemed against the character of central Oxford. The Woodstock road site has been reduced to rubble in preparation for development by next spring. The first buildings expect to open in late 2011.The new campus represents a major departure from the current collegiate system. The University is keen to stress that the plans are meant to complement college facilities “both academically and architecturally,” but that the development represents the most radical attempt to create a general campus “since Thomas Bodley designed his famous library in 1602.”“Crucial for the future”According to Luke Purser, the humanities head of development, it will include a large Mathematics institute, along with several buildings devoted to the humanities and two underground libraries.The plans will be reviewed by the strategic development committee of the council this November. They form the first stage in Oxford’s plan for renovation. A University spokesperson said, “This is an exciting development which will be crucial for the University’s future.”He added that the proposals have considered local opinion, “after extensive public consultation, the reaction from people has been generally supportive.”It forms the first result of an appeal for funds to regenerate Oxford’s facilities that was announced earlier this year.last_img read more