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Leeds Beckett University’s new £80m high performance Leeds School of Arts building revealed in full virtual tour

Student in library

The virtual tour of the flagship building is among the largest of its kind ever commissioned worldwide and allows viewers to fully explore all 11 storeys from a PC or mobile device.

This unique, high-tech, and environmentally friendly specialist facility is now open for business subject to the latest government Covid-19 safety guidance. But despite current restrictions every inch of the building can be seen by the public using this advanced 3D technology.

The building will support more than 2500 students and 100 staff studying, teaching and producing research in: film, TV, technology, sound, music, drama, dance, and fashion. It has been designed by the internationally renowned architectural practice Hawkins\Brown and was constructed by development partner Downing.

The state-of-the-art building, which is located on Portland Street at City Campus, helps cement the university’s presence in the heart of Leeds and will be the new home for many of the creative arts subjects offered at LBU. It is packed full of industry standard kit for the students to work with; facilities include a professional standard recording studio, 180-seat performance theatre, a 220-seat Dolby Atmos movie cinema, as well as dedicated TV, film, green screen and black box studios. There are also multiple editing suites, rehearsal and make-up rooms, and performance spaces.

This huge level of investment is a proud expression of just how much value the university places on arts and culture both for the institution and the wider Leeds city region. The building will help improve and elevate arts education for future students but also secure the future of the arts in Leeds as it will act as a hub for cultural and industry partnerships across the city.

Professor Peter Slee, Vice Chancellor of LBU said,

 “This incredible new building offers our talented students, staff and creative-industry partners access to world leading facilities. It underpins the powerful claims our city can make as a capital of culture and a thriving creative economy”.

The building exterior complements existing listed Portland Stone buildings in the Civic Quarter while providing modern open-plan learning spaces.  There are also two cool roof terraces with panoramic views across the city centre which offer versatile and unique spaces to host events and showcase everything from end-of-year shows to departmental performances.

Professor Lisa Stansbie, Dean of Leeds School of Arts at LBU, said: 

“Our new building is equipped with cutting-edge technology which opens up creative opportunities for our School. Extraordinary creative practice will be incubated in the Leeds School of Arts and we look forward to sharing it with our local community and our region. With the most up-to-date digital technologies, we are ready to demonstrate and celebrate the importance of arts practice in an uncertain world.”

Staff from the Leeds School of Arts predict that the building will fast become an integral part of the growing arts and culture scene in the city.

There will be limited opportunities to interview the Vice Chancellor, Professor Peter Slee, and Dean of School Professor Lisa Stansbie on Tuesday 27 April.

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