Ma­jor devel­op­ment plan to ex­pand Uni set for ap­proval

Warwickshire Telegraph - - NEWS - By TOM DAVIS

PLANS to re­de­velop the Univer­sity of War­wick with new state-of-the-art fa­cil­i­ties are ex­pected to be given ap­proval by Coven­try City Coun­cil next week.

The univer­sity has sub­mit­ted a hy­brid plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion to the coun­cil which in­cludes its vi­sion for nine cam­pus projects over the next five years.

Full plan­ning per­mis­sion is sought for a new Fac­ulty of Arts build­ing on Cen­tral Cam­pus and a £54.3 mil­lion In­ter­dis­ci­pli­nary Bio­med­i­cal Re­search build­ing on Gib­bet Hill Cam­pus.

Out­line plan­ning per­mis­sion is also re­quested for a new 1,000 bed stu­dent res­i­dence, a pedes­trian and cy­cle route, a De­gree Ap­pren­tice­ship Cen­tre, a new aca­demic build­ing, a pub­lic ‘Sci­ence Square,’ and a 650space multi-storey car park. The univer­sity say the plans will sup­port its am­bi­tion to be worl­drenowned, by help­ing to mod­ernise its fa­cil­i­ties, widen its teach­ing and skills devel­op­ment, and pro­vide sites for ‘po­ten­tially sig­nif­i­cant ex­ter­nally govern­ment funded re­search op­por­tu­ni­ties.’

But plans haven’t come with­out ob­jec­tions, with Bur­ton Green Parish Coun­cil rais­ing fears of in­creased traf­fic and West­wood Res­i­dents As­so­ci­a­tion cit­ing con­cern over car park­ing.

Can­non Park Com­mu­nity As­so­ci­a­tion have also ob­jected to the car park as it would in­crease the univer­sity’s over­all park­ing to 6452 – above 5422 cap agreed in 2009.

Yet the pro­pos­als are rec­om­mended to be ap­proved when they are put be­fore the coun­cil’s plan­ning com­mit­tee on Thurs­day, pend­ing Sec­tion 106 con­tri­bu­tions.

Univer­sity vice chan­cel­lor Stu­art Croft said: “New build­ings are and will con­tinue to be a part of our ev­ery­day ex­is­tence.

“We need to open one new aca­demic build­ing a year from now un­til at least 2023. We need new stu­dent ac­com­mo­da­tion, a new sports cen­tre, a re­de­vel­oped Arts Cen­tre.

“In or­der to do this and to keep War­wick as one of the world’s lead­ing uni­ver­si­ties, we need to do this to­gether, in­volv­ing the whole com­mu­nity.”

Coven­try City Coun­cil high­ways are re­quest­ing £500,000 to­wards high­ways im­prove­ments such as A46 link road; ei­ther £300,000 to­wards cy­cle/pedes­trian im­prove­ments, or traf­fic man­age­ment, car park­ing or pro­vi­sion of these works by the univer­sity; and £300,000 should the traf­fic flow thresh­olds be ex­ceeded.

The NHS has re­quested just un­der £100,000 to pro­vide ad­di­tional health­care.

The lat­est phase of the univer­sity’s vi­sion comes on the back of 31 plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tions ei­ther com­pleted, un­der con­struc­tion or granted plan­ning per­mis­sion over the last nine years.

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