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Muckle supports University of Sunderland in major London campus milestone

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Muckle supports University of Sunderland in major London campus milestone

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The University of Sunderland is poised to open a new London campus after signing a lease on its new premises, marking a significant step in the university's expansion

The move comes after more than a decade of continuous growth for the University of Sunderland in London, which will see its footprint near Canary Wharf increase by 65%.

The £8 million investment secures approximately 95,000 square feet of space across two adjoining buildings at 4 and 5 Harbour Exchange (HX). This expansion will enhance the learning, teaching, and working experiences for students, academics, and support staff, with the campus set to be completed later this year.

The real estate team at Muckle LLP, a leading commercial law firm, played a crucial role in negotiating the leases. The new campus, designed with end-users in mind, will feature modern and innovative study and collaboration spaces, cutting-edge learning facilities, and panoramic views of the Canary Wharf and Docklands area.

Jenny Gibbs, Property Management Surveyor at the University, highlighted the significance of this expansion: “We are so proud of the long-term growth of our student numbers. However, this increased demand, alongside technological advancements in delivering education programmes, has created the need for expansion to ensure we still deliver a fantastic learning, working, and teaching experience for all. I am looking forward to welcoming students and workers to our new London site in the coming months.”

The development incorporates feedback from surveys and focus groups conducted during the design stage, with a strong emphasis on sustainability, including provisions for bicycle storage. This new campus marks another milestone in the University’s ambitious £250 million investment programme aimed at transforming its UK campuses over the next decade.

The University first opened its London campus in 2012 at the nearby Marsh Wall building. Since then, it has welcomed over 24,000 students studying various subjects, including nursing, business, finance, and tourism. In addition to its UK presence, the University has expanded internationally, opening a campus in Hong Kong in 2017 and relocating to a larger facility in 2023 to accommodate more learners.

Deborah Lazenby, partner at Muckle LLP, and Kate Rickett, associate solicitor, led the negotiation and completion of the new leases, supported by the wider Muckle team. Deborah expressed her enthusiasm for the project: “I have worked with the University for over a decade now and it is fantastic to once again be a part of its next stage of growth. These leases are a pivotal moment for the new campus and demonstrate the University's commitment to providing a first-class learning and teaching experience to all users.”

Jenny Gibbs praised Muckle LLP’s support throughout the project: “Throughout the project, we found Deborah, Kate, and the wider team extremely responsive and proactive. The project was not without its challenges, but the Muckle team remained calm, pragmatic, and professional throughout, providing specialist advice that was essential in getting the deal over the line.”

The new Harbour Exchange campus is part of a broader transformation effort that includes the revitalisation of The Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St. Peter’s in Sunderland and planned improvements for the University’s City campus.

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