Designed by internationally acclaimed architects, Herzog & de Meuron, the £135 million, 15,500 sqm new Battersea campus is the largest investment in transformational space in the RCA’s 185 year history. The development marks a critical point in the RCA’s transformation into a dynamic, STEAM-focused postgraduate university (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics), expanding into computer and materials science, robotics, advanced manufacturing, complex visualisation and data science and intelligent mobility – and enabling the College’s community of postgraduate students to tackle some of the most pressing challenges of our times.
Following an unprecedented grant of £54 million from Her Majesty’s Treasury announced in the Chancellor’s Spring budget in 2016, donor funding has been led by a £15 million gift from the Sigrid Rausing Trust, along with support from other national and international philanthropists and industry partners.
Through RCA Battersea, and the generous gifts that enabled it, we have established new centres for world-leading research and continue to recruit the best academics from around the globe. Pioneering new programmes will include medical design, design robotics, city design and environmental architecture – underpinned by new knowledge-exchange labs, and research centres in intelligent mobility, materials science and computer science. And all will be placed, of course, alongside sculptors, painters, curators, writers and filmmakers - working collaboratively as in all creative industries.
Another key part of the College’s investment in its physical and intellectual infrastructure (from 2023), sees GenerationRCA providing considerable and necessary refurbishments to our beloved Darwin Building, sensitively returning the iconic tower to its former stature.
The adaptable studios at Kensington will continue to respond to contemporary questions, challenges and needs. Plans for Darwin’s evolution include: new, flexible working space on the ground floor; the reconfiguring and modernisation of its studios; new ‘clean digital’ workshops; a fully refurbished café; and a brand new reception area facing Kensington Gardens.