Physics body unveils plans to turn former Cally Road bar into AI hub
- Credit: Institute of Physics
The UK's professional body for physics has shared its plans to transform a former cocktail bar in Cally Road into a community learning hub.
The Institute of Physics (IOP) wants to extend its current HQ, which sits on the corner with Balfe Street, into a third floor extension on top of the two-storey Victorian building at 33 Caledonian Road.
It also wants to turn the the building it bought three years ago into a publicly available ‘makerspace’.
Since moving to Islington, the IOP has hosted a plethora of community events from a children’s science conference to family-friendly exhibitions, run homework clubs and invited students from City and Islington College to build a cosmic ray detector built on its roof.
Now the charity hopes to do even more to raise public awareness and understanding of physics through the redevelopment.
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The IOP has visions to create an "exciting, free-to-use, tech-focused space where people can come together with friends and can get involved with science and engineering, and where younger local residents can discover the many diverse career opportunities a technical career can offer".
Technicians and apprentices would run the new spaces, which would be equipped with computer coding facilities and high-specification computers to teach key coding languages for use in gaming software, AI, machine learning and augmented reality.
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A spokesperson said: "The IOP’s makerspace will inspire people to grow their skills and interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), and entrepreneurism.
"It will enable the local community to get hands-on with electronics, engineering, 3D printing, 3D modelling software and robotics."
A council planning committee is expected to make a decision on the project later in 2021.
If given the go ahead, works are expected to commence in autumn 2021 and take roughly 12-18 months to complete.
An online Zoom Q&A about the proposals with the architects and project team takes place at 4pm on July 1.
For more details see iop.org/about/contact-us/33cr.