The University of Sheffield was founded in 1905, and was one of the six ‘red brick’ civic universities built before the First World War. The estate has grown to 350,000sqm with a population of 26,000 students and 7,000 staff. The central campus stretches between the city centre and the leafy western suburbs of Sheffield. The wider estate reaches to all corners of the city, and includes student residences, sports facilities and manufacturing research facilities.
The last ten years have seen a transformation of the city centre's public realm, in particular the ‘Gold Route’; a high quality pedestrian axis through the city connecting its key public spaces and buildings, terminating at the university campus edge. The character of the campus public realm is weak in contrast to both the city centre and its own building stock.