North West Regional College, Derry

The Strand Building was the original technical college and is the oldest building on the NWRC Campus.  Completed in 1908 to the designs of E. J. Toye the building is a 4 storey, red brick structure with rendered horizontal banding built in the Victorian style with some arts and crafts detailing combining. The floor area is approximately 2500m².

tracey architects derry | north west regional college derry

The Strand Building occupies a prominent corner site at the junction of Strand Road and Lawrence Hill.  Due to recent road realignments the building now has a very strong focal point as you enter Strand Road and continue up into the heart of the city.

By the early 1980s the building was showing signs of deterioration and this was manifesting itself greatly in damage to the interior due to water penetration throughout the porous brick walls and the roof.  The result of this deterioration was the crass decision to paint over the external brickwork with bitumen and paint robbing the building of its subtle detailing and civic form and reducing it to something akin to custard covered cake. In spite of this the building retained its grade B1 listed status.

In 2001 the NWRC secured funding from the Department of Education to refurbish the building to house the Art Department which was then scattered through the city in a number of different locations.  The design team was appointed in February 2001 to carry out a condition survey of the building, prepare a cost estimate and prepare tender documentation.  One of the conditions of the funding package was that the works had to be complete by April 2002 and within the stringent budget of £2.5 m

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