STOURBRIDGE College has unveiled all-new multi-million plans to build a cutting edge art and design campus in the heart of Brierley Hill.

The college was dealt a crushing blow last July when its ambitious £36m new campus scheme failed to make the short-list for an emergency cash injection from the Learning & Skills Council.

But determined college principal Lynette Cutting has pulled out all the stops and, together with her management team and architects, has come up with a new cost-saving plan that will ensure the state-of-the-art new arts education centre still becomes a reality.

And this week images giving the first glimpse of the new development were released exclusively to the News.

Costing £12m instead of £36 - the new ultra-modern campus will be sited on the old Brier School site and will house the college’s art and design, textiles, fashion, graphics, illustration and digital media students Equally as iconic looking as the first design, the eye-catching and eco-friendly new building will be half the size of the original proposed scheme - but it still promises to change the face of Brierley Hill.

Lynette Cutting told the News: “I can’t believe we have been so lucky to get this design. It’s come out absolutely brilliant - I’m really very pleased with it.

“We’ve kept the costs down so significantly and it’ll be much more economic to run in the long-term, but we wanted to make sure we retained the asthetics.

“It’s going to be making a major contribution to the regeneration of Brierley Hill and will help to integrate Brierley Hill and Merry Hill.”

The public library complex that was due to sit together with the new campus has been put on hold for now to keep costs low, but it still looks set to become a reality as part of a future phase - as the building can be extended when extra funding becomes available.

Performing arts students will also remain based at the Hagley Road site - which is getting a £1.6m revamp - until further phases can be added at Brierley Hill.

Work is expected to start in Brierley Hill in August/September 2010 and the new campus will be open by September 2011.

It will accommodate up to 1,000 students - mostly aged 16 to 18, which will cut the VAT costs as they do not apply to buildings housing mostly teens in that age bracket; and the project will be funded by Advantage West Midlands and a £9m loan.

The building will include an iconic glass gallery frontage - to give the public walking past a chance to peek at student art work; and it will be kitted out with recycled furniture and equipment from the old Longlands site to help save on costs.

The campus will also be in a prime position alongside the proposed Metro route to enable students easy access by public transport.

Click below to see animated impression of how the new development will look.