Campus, capital and IT – a chapter of the 2014 Annual Report of the University of Newcastle, Australia. Includes information projects and sustainability.

Building the future - infrastructure

During 2015 we delivered on our commitment to creating a vibrant, engaging and sustainable University underpinned by a strong service culture. Our campus and work environment were further enhanced with initiatives and programs that position us well to respond to changes in our external environment and to meet future challenges.

2015 key figures

Key figures - infrastructure

2015 highlights

  • Delivered new student accommodation at Callaghan campus, adding 778 new beds.
  • Opened new premises for UON Sydney, comprising leading technology enabled teaching and learning spaces.
  • Completed the final stage of the $30.0m research facilities at Newcastle Institute for Energy and Resources.
  • Delivered new office and laboratory accommodation for 80 Global Centre for Environmental Remediation researchers.
  • Commenced implementation of UON’s second Environmental Sustainability Plan.
  • Implemented a single maintenance head contractor model in line with our Strategic Asset Management Plan.
  • Construction commenced on the $95.0m NeW Space project in the City of Newcastle.

Strategic performance

The Campus, Capital and IT Plan strategic priorities for 2015 were:

Major capital works and Information Technology (IT) initiatives undertaken in 2015 have further enhanced the learning and teaching environment across UON campuses.

Student accommodation

The opening of new student accommodation buildings in 2015 almost doubled UON’s residential community. The four residential buildings at Callaghan campus enable student living in a variety of configurations.

Digital infrastructure

A comprehensive IT program of work was completed in 2015. Activities delivered included a series of ‘fix and modernise’ initiatives to improve the performance, resilience, capacity and capability of services provided to our researchers. A number of IT security related activities were also undertaken during 2015 including a planned disaster recovery exercise to test UON’s preparedness to respond to, and recover from, any major disruptive event affecting our primary data centre operations.

IT Digital 2020 Strategy

To enable UON to fully harness the potential of digital technology a Digital 2020 Strategy was developed in 2015. This strategy will guide our digital technology decisions and investments and will ultimately provide a competitive differentiator for our students, educators, researchers, staff and our community.

Increased Wi-Fi

During the first half of 2015 over 2,200 Wi-Fi points were deployed at Callaghan campus, extending coverage to 99 per cent of the campus and achieving saturation levels of Wi-Fi connectivity at all campus locations.

UON’s new premises in Sydney are a showcase for the way we use space to deliver next generation learning experiences. The new location has expanded floor space, interactive classrooms, informal study spaces, break out areas, collaborative study spaces, meeting and consulting rooms, library and reception areas.

  • Completed the final stage of the $30.0m research facilities at Newcastle Institute for Energy and Resources.
  • Delivered new office and laboratory accommodation for 80 Global Centre for Environmental Remediation researchers.

Looking forward

We recognise that building a sustainable future for UON is critical to support the NeW Futures Strategic Plan 2016-2025. In 2016 we will focus on:

  • Financial sustainability provided through UON’s Long Term Financial Plan (2016-2020), continued refinement of UON’s budget model, program viability analysis and a continuing focus on ensuring efficiency and effectiveness of our structures, systems and business processes to provide agility in service delivery.
  • Shaping UON’s future digital environment through the implementation of the first phase of the IT Digital 2020 Strategy.
  • Developing our campus estates and physical infrastructure through implementation of UON’s Estate Strategy, the delivery of the strategic capital investment plan for new teaching, learning and research and innovation initiatives, the ongoing campus upgrade and replacement program, the implementation of new retail and place-making strategies and the ‘intelligent campus’ strategy.
  • Environmental sustainability through implementation of initiatives outlined in UON’s Environmental Sustainability Plan (2015-2017).