Heriot-Watt’s new GRID, which will become the University’s flagship building, will open its doors in early 2019.
Architects Sheppard Robson have now been appointed, and will be designing a space that is innovative, challenging and inspiring for students, academics, industry and society.
The GRID building’s design will be based around the latest models for ‘open space collaboration’. Flexible, immersive learning, teaching and enterprise areas will encourage interaction and design-led education.
The real excitement has come from designing flexibility and dynamism into the concept and fabric of the building so that the traditional barriers between academic disciplines are marginalised.
The centre is envisioned as a ‘discovery laboratory’, where students can design, explore and create devices and systems that have real-world applications. The fluid, open design of the building will mean that students can observe and collaborate, removing barriers between study and research interests.
The centre will be a place where students, and academics, learn by doing, distinguishing them from peers in other universities and supporting them to become future leaders. Teaching will be transformed into a design-focused, interdisciplinary approach.
Civic, commercial and industrial partners will be invited into the centre, creating a real hub for new industries and supply chains.
The GRID will be transformative for education, industry and how the world approaches its problem solving. The project is ambitious and will have global impact – just like our university.
Dr Gillian Murray, Deputy Principal for Enterprise and Business, said: “Alongside the infrastructure development will be a new enterprise programme to build a strong entrepreneurial culture, in which students will be encouraged and supported to launch their own spin outs and start-ups.
“Heriot-Watt’s ambition is to be a world-leading institution that harnesses creativity, develops leaders that generate ground-breaking projects and creates entirely new industries and supply chains."
The centre is being built on the site made vacant by the old student residences.