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Building a solid future: Construction opportunities in the university sector 
Building a solid future: Construction opportunities in the university sector

Despite a difficult couple of years in the further education sector, with many students displaced and remote learning having been the norm for some time, recent reports from Glenigan indicate that the UK’s universities are set to provide the construction industry with a wealth of opportunity. 

Renovation and new build projects are required to cater to the growing number of students expected in the coming years, with 2022 seeing a 5% increase in applications across the country.  

On the horizon are a number of significant developments including mixed use campus facilities and their surrounding infrastructure, research parks, additional campus buildings and expansions to student accommodations. 

Focus on the floor 

The range of different environments within a university’s grounds is vast. From back-of-house service spaces, food-preparation areas and outdoor landscaping through to lobbies, laboratories and lecture halls, the floor’s service criteria vary drastically across the campus. 

Polymer flooring technologies are able to cater to a wide range of applications, including many of those found in the university environment.  

Epoxy terrazzo 

Epoxy terrazzo, like vebro Classic Terrazzo, can help to create an impressive, welcoming experience in the lobbies and concourses throughout the university campus. The resin alternative to traditional cement-based terrazzo allows for complete customisation, with bespoke aggregate blends encapsulated in a resin binder in almost any colour imaginable.   

In addition to its aesthetic appeal, epoxy terrazzo boasts exceptional durability and longevity. It is highly resilient, capable of withstanding heavy foot traffic without showing signs of wear, making it ideal for high traffic areas such as lobbies & corridors.  

Sustainability and safety are also key considerations, and epoxy terrazzo, with anti-slip options, long lifespan and recycled aggregates, delivers on both fronts. 

PU comfort  

PU comfort liquid vinyl systems, like those in the vebroflex range, offer unique advantages for many areas across the campus. 

Its enhanced comfort and acoustic performance provide a cushioned and resilient flooring experience, absorbing shock and reducing strain on joints, all while minimising the passage of sound between floors in multi-storey, multi-occupancy facilities. These features proves particularly beneficial when it comes to the wellbeing of staff and students alike, supporting individuals spending long periods on their feet and creating a quieter environment by minimising noise levels across the building. 

PU comfort might be soft on the knees, but it’s tough on wear and tear! This flooring material resists abrasions and indentation from foot traffic and scuffs from wheeled chair castors, ensuring it maintains its appearance and functionality even in busy settings such as corridors, libraries and classrooms. This durability translates to long-term cost savings, as it minimises the need for frequent repairs or replacements. 

ESD flooring 

Antistatic flooring, like Vebro Polymers’ vebrostatic range of conductive and dissipative epoxy and polyurethane systems, has proven to be highly effective in safeguarding sensitive areas where electrostatic discharge (ESD) poses a significant risk. 

Laboratories, research facilities and specialist classroom within universities, for example, often house valuable and sensitive equipment, as well as volatile substances, while server rooms could experience data loss, equipment damage and system malfunctions should ineffective flooring be chosen. 

Antistatic resin flooring provides essential protection in these environments by effectively controlling static electricity, preventing the buildup and discharge of static charges that can damage delicate instruments and sensitive electronic components. 

PU concrete 

PU concrete systems, like Vebro’s vebrocrete range, are an excellent choice for food preparation spaces, as well as maintenance areas and workshops, where spills, heat and heavy impact are daily occurrences.  

Providing exceptional resistance to chemicals, oils and food stains, PU concrete helps to maintain high hygiene standards. Its seamless construction ensures a safe and easy-to-clean surface that minimises the risk of slips and falls, while its durability withstands heavy equipment and foot traffic. 

Methyl-methacrylate (MMA)  

Methyl-methacrylate (MMA) flooring technology offers a unique advantage in university spaces by providing quick installation with minimal downtime compared to traditional flooring, allowing for rapid project completion. Whether it’s corridors or canteens, study areas or public spaces, MMA flooring allows universities to maintain regular operations with minimal interruption during renovations or upgrades.  

In addition to its rapid installation properties, MMA flooring, like the decorate flake and quartz systems in Vebro’s vebrospeed range, provides a seamless and durable surface, a finish that is particularly beneficial in high-traffic areas, such as corridors and canteen areas, where smooth surfaces contribute to ease of movement and cleaning. What’s more, MMA flooring’s inherent durability and resistance to wear and tear make it a reliable choice for university spaces that experience heavy foot traffic. 

Resin bound stone

Resin bound aggregate systems, like vebrobound Stone, can breathe life into outdoor areas of university campuses, creating stunning and safe walkways and seating areas.

The SUDs compliant systems withstand adverse weather conditions, and provides a slip-resistant, stylish and low maintenance alternative to loose gravel, block paving or concrete.

We’ll level with you…

vebroscreed, our range of cementitious smoothing underlayments & rapid-set screed additives has been designed to prepare sub-floors prior to the installation of floor coverings and finishes including laminate, tiles, vinyl, carpet, wood and polymer flooring, making them ideal throughout the university campus.

vebroscreed can be installed on any concrete substrate to improve, repair or level out any undulations or imperfections in the substrate that may compromise the ability to install or the finished quality of the chosen floor covering.

Specifying the flooring for a further education setting?  

Vebro’s range of polymer flooring solutions are ideally suited to meet the service requirements of areas across the university campus. Contact your local Vebro team to discuss your project requirements. 

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