CITB establishes landmark £6.5m Construction Wales Innovation Centre with UWTSD


A ground-breaking £6.5m Wales-wide agreement which will create construction training for 1,100 people per year was signed yesterday.

Artists imprtession of the Swansea waterfront innovation centre

The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) and a consortium led by The University of Wales Trinity Saint David, will establish the Construction Wales Innovation Centre (CWIC) to offer state-of-the-art facilities and world-class training for individuals and construction companies.

With its proposed headquarters at the Swansea Waterfront Innovation Quarter, the CWIC will also have sites at colleges across Wales, including Coleg Sir Gâr and Coleg Ceredigion, which are part of the UWTSD Group, and Coleg Cambria in North Wales and Coleg y Cymoedd in South East Wales.

Construction is due to begin towards the end of 2016 with the CWIC’s opening targeted for September 2018.

Mark Bodger, Strategic Partnership Director for CITB Cymru Wales, said: “This landmark partnership will ensure we have the right skills in place meet our industry’s current and future needs.

“This exciting new centre will be a major step forward for the construction industry in Wales and help it become a leader in digital and modern construction and the repair of traditional buildings and heritage sites.”

Gerald Naylor, UWTSD Project Director, said: “We are looking forward to working with the CITB to develop a new model for delivering skills to the construction sector in Wales and beyond.

“Working with our FE College partners across Wales we will develop a ‘Hub and Spoke’ framework that will enable companies to access training through a central point.”

The “Hub” will be based at the University’s Swansea Waterfront Innovation Quarter and the “Spokes” will be located at the Wales-wide colleges listed above.

The CITB and UWTSD collaboration will offer companies the facilities and expertise to test new concepts in construction training. It will:

  • Be the first of its kind in Britain to provide applied research, training and consultancy through one partnership.
  • Provide state-of-the-art facilities to allow students and businesses to learn best practice techniques.
  • Offer a “rapid construction zone” to start innovative systems for bespoke tests such as structural performance.

Donna Griffiths, Partnerships Manager at CITB, said: “The CWIC will, for the first time, deliver an integrated career pathway between craft, trade and professional construction occupations across the whole of Wales.

“The CWIC will respond to the skills challenges Wales faces and help train the next generation of workers in construction.”

Professor Medwin Hughes, DL, Vice-Chancellor, UWTSD added “The vision for the Swansea Waterfront Innovation Quarter is to create a neighbourhood where the University and its partners can work with industry to exploit opportunities that will not only benefit the region but will also deliver those benefits to the rest of Wales. This development is key to us achieving that vision”.

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