Green light for city campus

In 2017, a whole new campus will arise on the north side of UMCG. The RUG and UMCG have officially approved the plans.
By Tim Bakker / Translation by Sarah van Steenderen

After years of discussion, the Healthy Ageing Campus has finally been greenlit by the RUG and UMCG. This was announced last Friday. The campus on the north side of UMCG will house the University College Groningen (UCG) and Usva. The design phase will begin in 2017.

The RUG will also build ‘multi-functional classrooms’ on the campus, where students from the Faculty of Medical Sciences (FMS) and the pharmacy programme will take classes. The ACLO annex – currently located in the KPN building next to the station – will also be housed at the campus, in addition to student organisations such as KEI, the introductory week organisation, and AIESEC, ESN, student associations SOG and Lijst Calimero, and the Studentenkrant..

Room for grow for UCG

UCG, currently located at the Hoendiepskade, will have a new home in the historic building at Bloemsingel 1. The new location will give UCG more room to grow. SSH is tasked with housing the UCG students on campus at the Vrydemalaan.

Now that the decision has been made, UCG can slowly start making plans, says portfolio manager Rob van Ouwerkerk. ‘This is the start of the design phase. The land has been purchased and we are figuring out how to organise the area. We will think about the design of the building later.’

However, that does not mean there are no current plans. ‘Obviously, we do have ideas about a few aspects, such as offices, study rooms, and the growing number of students. But that won’t happen until 2020. Very few things are certain in the current phase We’re looking forward to it and we’ll make sure UCG will have a good spot.’

So happy

The Usva will see a lifelong dream fulfilled when they get a new building. ‘I’m so happy,’ says an enthusiastic Delinah Halvorson-Molen, chair of the University Student Culture Centre. ‘We want to finish our blueprints before the summer. We got our inspiration from CREA (editor’s note: the Amsterdam version of Usva) and from the new theatre in Winschoten. We’ll be using this to come up with something great. We’re celebrating our 50th anniversary in 2019/2020, so it would be nice if it could be finished by then.’

The new building should include a modern café, a multi-functional theatre with room for 200 people, and several training rooms. The Usva would like to design the rooms in such a way that they can be used for educational purposes during the day. ‘We each have our own ambitions we want to realise in this new building, but we also want to collaborate with our environment and we want to make sure the buildings are in tune with each other’, Halvorson-Molen explains.

Liven things up

She says that collaboration is one of the greatest advantages of the move. ‘While we have a great building right now and we’re doing pretty well training-wise, we are kind of tucked away in our location and we have limited space and sound options. At the new campus, we can liven things up for people after they studied all day, and we’ll have a great location where we’ll be visible as well as close to a lot of our cultural partners.’

That is because a stone’s throw from the new campus, the cultural area Ebbingekwartier is being constructed. Next to the Machinefabriek, which houses the Noord Nederlands Toneel at the Bloemstraat, a building is being constructed that will accommodate, among others, Club Guy & Roni, Het Houten Huis, and the Noorderlingen. ‘So that is a win-win situation for us’, says Halvorson-Molen.



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