Colleges Caught In Construction Cutbacks

By Hazel Last edited 120 months ago
Colleges Caught In Construction Cutbacks

Image by SallyB2
The Learning Skills Council (LSC) has put on hold 144 rebuilding projects for colleges, putting a handful of them into turmoil as new classrooms, science labs and performing arts spaces have halted mid-construction, possibly never to be completed.

In London, South Thames College is facing a serious problem if funding does not come through in April, having borrowed £46million across long and short-term loans to put up a new building, proceeding with assurance by the LSC that the money was available to them to cover the costs. No new building and massive debts to start the Easter term is not very cheering and hopes are being pinned on the Treasury intervening to sort out this large-scale cock-up.

Treasury intervention and an independent review to find out how these colleges got into this situation would both be welcome. But... Londonist has another idea for these half-built, abandoned colleges: why not offer gap year students the chance to build a school in the UK rather than in Africa or Asia? They get to minimise their carbon footprint, the colleges will be finished, everybody learns something and it's all about giving something back to the community. If you hear of a new LSC initiative for getting young people into construction through real, hands-on experience on local projects, they nicked the idea from us. And we would like a new sushi bar in the Londonist canteen in exchange, thanks.

Last Updated 18 March 2009