Page last updated at 09:22 GMT, Wednesday, 2 September 2009 10:22 UK

Go-ahead for 51m college project

Hartlepool College plans
The project's cost has been reduced from 62m

A £51m redevelopment of a Teesside college has been given the green light by the government.

A new five-storey building is being constructed on Hartlepool College's Stockton Street site.

It will include industry-standard engineering, aerospace and construction equipment, plus fitness, beauty and conference facilities for the public.

The project is one of only 12 out of 144 approved after a Learning and Skills Council (LSC) funds shortage.

The LSC's chief executive Mark Haysom resigned after 144 college building schemes, which had been approved, were thrown into doubt because it did not have the money to pay for them.

Along with the other projects, Hartlepool College was asked to reduce the original £62m cost of its plans.

A spokeswoman for the college said they had met the reduction through "value engineering".

Principal and Chief Executive David Waddington said: "Over the last four years the staff of the college and key partners have worked extremely hard to ensure that Hartlepool has the 'world class' education and training facilities needed to secure economic prosperity into the 21st Century."

Work at the college is due to start in October and it is expected to open in September 2011.

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