Construction begins on landmark University of Hertfordshire building

CGI image of new University of Hertfordshire new SPECS building in Hatfield, Hertfordshire

The new building will include a robotics lab, advanced cybersecurity facilities, electric vehicle centre, flight simulator and wind tunnel. - Credit: University of Hertfordshire

Construction has begun on the University of Hertfordshire's landmark new development, which will provide a new home for the School of Physics, Engineering and Computer Science (SPECS).

The building work was officially launched on January 19 with a ceremony at the College Lane campus in Hatfield.

University staff were joined by representatives from Morgan Sindall Construction and the Mayor of Hatfield, Cllr Richard Griffiths, to celebrate the milestone. 

As building work begins on the five-storey, 15,000m2, multi-million-pound steel structure, that was announced in November, the University has revealed more details about the new development - including a robotics lab, advanced cybersecurity facilities, electric vehicle centre, flight simulator, wind tunnel and an Experiential Learning Zone. 

Ceremony of people in high-vis jackets on muddy building site with big orange digger working away at the ground.

The new SPECS building is scheduled to open in 2024. - Credit: University of Hertfordshire

Professor Rodney Day, Dean of the School, explained: “The new SPECS home will transform the student experience – demonstrating the exciting and fulfilling possibilities within modern STEM careers and driving more young people from all backgrounds to want to study in these fields.  

“There is a UK skills gap and a lack of diversity in STEM industries, both of which hold back progress. From the underpinning subjects of engineering, computer science and physics, to applications of machine learning, robotics, cyber security and data science, the new building will reflect the teaching and research that we excel at. It will support the provision of a future workforce with advanced skills and expertise that will generate economic growth.”

The new SPECS building is scheduled to open in 2024.