Work has officially begun on The Spine – the RCP's new £35 million northern headquarters in Liverpool – following a recent ceremony to mark the breaking of the ground upon which it will be built.
Professor Dame Jane Dacre performed the groundbreaking ceremony – along with the mayor of Liverpool, Joe Anderson – in one of her last official duties before handing over the presidency of the RCP to Professor Andrew Goddard.
Discussing the new building, RCP president Professor Goddard said:
I am lucky to have become president at a time when the Royal College of Physicians has both been celebrating its 500th anniversary and is also about to open a brand new chapter in its history with an amazing building that will embody our commitment to wellbeing as we bring high-quality research, medical training, examination and conference facilities to Liverpool and work more closely with our regional members.
This is a physical statement that we have come a long way from our origins as a college and are now very much an organisation for the 21st century, and our members and fellows throughout the UK and the world.
Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson said:
I’m delighted that work has now begun on the new northern HQ for the Royal College of Physicians - it’s a landmark moment for them and the city of Liverpool. The Spine is going to be an outstanding building and a real statement of our intent to deliver a world-class medical research hub at Paddington Village.
Its opening will be a historic occasion and one of many which will cement the flourishing reputation of the city’s knowledge sector and its role as a major economic engine in the north of England.
Colin Sinclair, CEO of Knowledge Quarter (KQ) Liverpool, added:
Attracting the RCP to the Spine at Paddington Village is the perfect example of how we can successfully collaborate across Liverpool to support private and public initiatives in health, tech and science. We are unbelievably proud to welcome the RCP to the city region, as they join us in creating a world-leading innovation district here in KQ Liverpool.
The 160,000 sq ft building in KQ Liverpool - the city’s biggest mayoral development zone - will be one of the healthiest workspaces for mental and physical wellbeing in the UK and it is hoped that it will be among the first to achieve the international WELL standard of modern building design when it opens its doors in 2020.
Located within Liverpool City Council’s £1 billion Paddington Village development, The Spine will boast an internal sky garden, complete with high-oxygen producing plants, a fine dining restaurant available for private hire, a large bicycle and shower facility, and under croft car parking for 50 spaces featuring five electric charging points.