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Work begins on Southampton Arts Complex

21st January 2014

Work has started on the site of the new £40m Southampton Arts Complex development.

Capita is providing project management, CDMC and surveying services on the scheme which comprises a new arts complex, seven retail units and 38 apartments.

The completed arts complex will incorporate community film company City Eye; the University of Southampton’s John Hansard Gallery; a multi-purpose performing arts centre with two flexible performance spaces; and a dance studio.

The retail and residential elements of the project are due to open in spring 2015 and, following a 12 month fit out programme, the arts complex is expected to open in 2016.

The scheme, adjacent to Capita's regional business centre in the city, is being overseen by Grosvenor Developments and Southampton City Council and will provide over 300 direct jobs and is expected to bring 750,000 visitors to the city every year. It has already attracted £7.3m funding from Arts Council England as part of its National Lottery-funded capital programme.

Councillor Simon Letts, Leader of Southampton City Council said: "I am delighted that work will soon commence on this fantastic project in the heart of our growing Cultural Quarter. The arts complex will provide residents and visitors to the city with a truly world class facility and help establish Southampton as a leading cultural centre. I am really pleased to see work start on one of the seven VIP projects in our City Centre Master Plan which aims to bring 24,000 new jobs, 5,000 new homes, and £3 billion of investment into the city by 2030."

Phil Gibby, Area Director, South West, Arts Council England said: “We’re very pleased to see our Capital award supporting a vital new hub for arts and culture in Southampton.  The Capital programme is about backing really exciting projects for maintaining and improving the arts infrastructure in this country.  When the right arts and cultural buildings are in place, organisations thrive, artists benefit and more audiences are able to enjoy great art in great spaces.  This complex will mean that everyone in Southampton has access to high quality arts opportunities right in the heart of their city and can only strengthen the contribution cultural organisations already make to the local economy.”

McLaren Construction is the contractor for the overall development with Miller contractor for the Arts fit-out.

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