Work has started on a new Institute of Technology (IoT) building at Loughborough College, advancing the East Midlands as a major tech learning hub.

The IOT is a joint partnership between Loughborough College and Loughborough University, and will be the latest addition to the East Midlands growing tech and skills learning portfolio and forms part of the East Midlands Institute of Technology (EMIoT) partnership.

Lindum Group will deliver the £6.5 million, three storey building, which will include nine new classrooms, four science labs, two open plan working spaces, and three offices.

Once completed, the IoT building will focus on levelling up the critical engineering, manufacturing and digital skills required by local and national employers to address the ambitious engineering challenges of clean growth. The IoT will also embrace the advanced skills required for an Artificial Intelligence and data-driven economy.

Initial ground works and site set up has already begun, with plans to finish the project in March 2025.

Loughborough College Director of Estates and Sustainability, Dale Richardson, said: “This is a key milestone for our pioneering new Institute of Technology building, and we’re thrilled to see work progressing on such a unique project.

“The EMIoT will respond to the local and regional skills demand and give students the green, clean, digital skills required to tackle the challenges of tomorrow. We’re very excited to see work progress over the coming months and become part of the future of tech.”

The new building will have a low energy demand, with highly efficient passive design features and building services systems. It will be highly insulated and will include technologies such as mechanical ventilation with heat recovery and heat pumps for heating and hot water. These technologies, plus solar panels on the roof, will be compatible with a net zero carbon future.

The EMIoT will specialise in programmes including Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies, Information and Communication Technology, Science and Mathematics, and Construction, Planning and the Built Environment.

Its graduates will be part of the net-zero carbon workforce needed to lead the UK’s green and digital revolution.

Lindum Construction Manager Mark Robertson said: “It is fantastic to be starting work on what will be a significant addition to the offering at Loughborough College, helping to boost the East Midland’s standing as a leader in digital skills and critical engineering.

“This project will eventually help to train the next generation of forward thinkers who will advance our understanding and practical appliance of greener technologies and artificial intelligence.”

Work was procured through Pagabo’s Medium Works framework. David Llewellyn, Head of Construction and Infrastructure at Pagabo, said: “We are delighted to see another project procured through our Medium Works Framework following a direct award to Lindum Group. We are excited to follow the journey of this project and once complete, see the positive outcomes that the new facilities will play in levelling up student skills.”

In addition to the brand-new building in Loughborough, the EMIoT partnership has planned investment in an extension at Derby College and the renovation of an existing building at University of Derby.