Bidwells is beginning work to build a new undergraduate centre for Wadham College in Oxford after planning consent was granted by Oxford City Council.

The development of two buildings, located in the Back Quad, will replace the existing Goddard Building, built in 1951. The project will be managed by Bidwells. 

The College commissioned the architects AL_A, the studio of RIBA Stirling Prize winner Amanda Levete, in July 2016 after an invited design competition. The firm has since been working with the College Building Working Group to develop the detailed designs.

Improving access to Wadham and its buildings are key to this development. The two new buildings will enable the College to expand and develop its work with students from disadvantaged ‘widening participation’ backgrounds. Celebrating inclusivity, they provide level access to every part of the two buildings and accessible student accommodation. 

Warden of Wadham College Ken Macdonald QC said:

This inspiring new Undergraduate Centre and purpose-built facilities for access and outreach, the first of their kind in Oxford, signal our faith in the College’s future, and mark its continuing confidence in the harmony between learning and beauty that our foundation buildings express so well.

Since the initial offer of donor funding towards these buildings, Wadham students and staff have been involved in the pre-planning process, through a variety of focus groups and committees.

Working in consultation with the Oxford Design Review Panel, Historic England, Oxford Preservation Trust and others, the architects have created two outstanding buildings which will provide much needed facilities and improved functionality. 

Subject to building schedules, work on the new undergraduate and access centre is set to start in July 2018 with the building completed by August 2020. 

Further information about this building development here.

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