GVA secures planning for world-class sports training facility at Loughborough University

The Planning, Development and Regeneration (PDR) team at real estate adviser GVA has secured planning permission on behalf of Loughborough University for a new state-of-the art national sports training centre.

The five-storey Elite Athletics Centre (EAC) will be located in the eastern end of the campus, next to the Paula Radcliffe Athletics Stadium and will provide a range of facilities designed to provide world-class training for athletes.

This will include a nutrition lounge and café serving specially prepared bespoke nutritional meals for each athlete based on their dietary requirements, as well as rest and relaxation areas to assist athletes’ well-being and to aid recovery between training sessions.

The EAC will also feature on-site accommodation in the form of 44 bedrooms and 20 ‘altitude’ rooms, enabling athletes to acclimatise themselves with the effects of high altitude environments. Athletes will also benefit from being able to train alongside practitioners and researchers with unrivalled knowledge and expertise in coaching, sports science and sports medicine.

It is hoped that the centre will be used by Team GB Olympians and Paralympians training for the 2020 Games in Tokyo.

The project builds on GVA’s longstanding relationship with Loughborough University, with the PDR team having previously assisted in the delivery of a new sports stadium, sports centre, grass and 3G floodlit pitches for football, hockey, rugby and, American football  and a number of multi-use games areas.

Tim Evans from GVA’s PDR team, said: “Over the years we have helped Loughborough University expand by over 200 acres, transforming the campus, which includes the Science and Enterprise Park, into what it is today.

“The delivery of the EAC will represent another significant step forward for the University, ensuring that the campus offers the very best training opportunities across as broad and diverse an array of sporting disciplines as possible. The EAC will enable world class athletes to rest, recover, sleep and eat whilst training at the university, ensuring that they are able to focus on their preparation.”

Loughborough University is one of only six locations in the country that has been identified by UK Sport as a host for one of these prestigious world class centres, due in part to the high number of sporting National Governing Bodies (NGBs) that have training bases established on the campus.

Dave Fulford, Director of Development at Loughborough University, said: “The securing of consent for this new training facility paves the way for to the delivery of state-of-the-art sports facilities for both our students and professional athletes. Without these facilities the University would not be able to achieve its ambition of being the world leading university for sport / elite performance environment.”

“We have a long-standing relationship with GVA and their team has assisted us greatly over the years in ensuring that we are providing the very best facilities and opportunities for our students. I look forward to working with them as we continue to move forward towards realising our goals of providing a world-class educational community.”

Already well established as a centre for sporting excellence, Loughborough University currently hosts national performance centres for athletics, cricket, netball, weightlifting, swimming and triathlon, working in close partnership with these sports’ respective National Governing Bodies (NGBs) to help them deliver athlete development performance programmes.

Alongside UK Sport, the University works closely with, Sport England, the British Olympic Association, the British Paralympic Association, and the English Institute of Sport. It also provides support to Olympic and Paralympic performance preparations in badminton, wheelchair basketball and wheelchair rugby.

GVA’s PDR team has worked with Loughborough University for over 20 years, assisting them in developing their estates strategy and achieving their goals for both carbon reduction and ensuring they have the right building stock to enhance the overall student experience.

For more information, please contact Tim Evans, Associate at GVA, on 0121 609 8389 or [email protected].

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