Plans for a new £60m life science block at the University of Sussex — which includes space for the pharmacy department — are back on track.
The development, which is part of the university’s future campus masterplan, was in doubt after outline planning permission was rejected by Brighton and Hove city council in 2014.
The then Green administration rejected the plans on the grounds that the proposals were an overdevelopment of the Falmer site. There were concerns about the increase in student numbers, which would put pressure on the city to provide more student accommodation.
The university appealed against the refusal and the case was reconsidered at a government planning inspectorate hearing. But the hearing was cut short after the council withdrew its objections and the government planning inspector upheld the university’s appeal on 30 July 2015.
The university’s registrar John Duffy welcomed the decision. “The careful development of our Falmer campus will allow us to provide a better education and experience for our students, while delivering substantial investment and more jobs in Sussex and the wider region.”
The new block is due to be completed by September 2018. In the meantime, MPharm students will be taught in refurbished buildings on the campus.
The university told the General Pharmaceutical Council, Britain’s pharmacy regulator, that it had spare laboratory capacity to meet the demands of a new pharmacy school but would, if necessary, reduce student numbers until the new block is open.