1 October 2021
A soaring quintet of new halls of residence bring designer high-rise style to the Brighton skyline, while providing homes for over 800 students.
The five Mithras Halls towers – named Brunswick, Goldstone, Hanover, Preston and Regency, and ranging from 8-18 storeys – rise from the University of Brighton's redeveloped campus at Moulsecoomb. They are just one element in the university’s ambitious Big Build project which, alongside new teaching facilities and accommodation, is creating a futuristic new neighbourhood for the city, complemented by the adjacent Preston Barracks development.
Lucy Donaldson, a first-year Environmental Sciences BSc(Hons) student, said: “The rooms are modern and spacious with plenty of storage. I really like the minimalist design, which makes it easy to have your own personal touch. And it’s great being able to live and study on campus.”
The university's transformation of the Moulsecoomb cityscape will also bring jobs and broader economic benefits to the area, alongside its array of landmark buildings. The most striking of these is Elm House - a stunning new home for the university's School of Business and Law, whose modern spaces provide an inspiring backdrop for the return of staff and students to campus for the new academic year.
Elm House's triple storey atrium will also provide a spectacular space for public performances and exhibitions, while its spectacular facade is clad with over 50,000 bespoke ceramic tiles inspired by the celebrated 19th century Brighton Mathematical tile. These have been given a 21st century update with three levels of reflectivity - matte, semi gloss and high gloss – to provide a sense of movement in changing light, mimicking the flowing movement of starling murmurations which are regularly seen in the skies above Brighton.
The Big Build development has been designed and constructed to the highest environmental and sustainability standards. This includes new green spaces with over 300 native species trees, plus improved facilities for pedestrians and cyclists. The 800+ rooms in the new Mithras Halls means the university is now able to guarantee accommodation for all first-year students, providing a true campus experience and easing pressure on the local housing rental market.
The university's Vice-Chancellor Debra Humphris said: “The Big Build has transformed our Moulsecoomb campus, providing a bold new gateway to the city. Together, the mix of new academic, residential, retail and leisure facilities provide our students and staff with the best possible university experience.
“We’re proud of the role the University of Brighton plays in the city’s success, and I know the investment we’ve made at Moulsecoomb will have a major impact – not just on our university community but on our neighbours, local businesses and all our partners and stakeholders across Brighton and beyond.”
The inspiring reinvention of the area will continue over autumn with the completion of new Student Union facilities, including a new state-of-the-art gym and distinctive social spaces. For those not using the excellent public transport options or cycling, there will be a new multi-storey car park including 55 electric charging points to further encourage the city's push to zero emissions and greater sustainability.
Next summer, meanwhile, will see the final piece of the Big Build jigsaw slot into place with the completion of a sleek – and fully accessible - modern footbridge spanning Lewes Road, seamlessly knitting both sides of the campus together.