The Claverton Campus is located approximately 2.5km to the east of Bath city centre on Claverton Down, which borders the World Heritage Site to the south and the west, the Green Belt and the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). The Public Inquiry into the 2007 B&NES Local Plan resulted in parts of the campus being removed from the Green Belt. Development on this site is sensitive because of the impact on views from the surrounding area. Light pollution from this elevated position above the World Heritage site is a concern, as is the impact of taller buildings.
The Trust has responded in the detail to the 2018 consultation on the university masterplan. We have had considerable and well publicised concerns regarding the flurry of purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) applications coming forward in the last few years on the city’s brownfield sites. Therefore our primary issue regarding the masterplan is the absence of numbers. The masterplan did not include any data on the university’s growth targets and any statistics on how many students the university is looking to accommodate on campus and how many will need to find off-campus accommodation (this figure currently stands at 18% of students housed on campus). Clearly these numbers must come before and inform any type of forward planning about development on campus.
We are clear in saying that if the university wishes to achieve growth targets that will impact on the available land in the city earmarked to contribute for strategic growth (housing and employment) then the university must:
One particular form of development we would wish to see is low-rise accommodation built over car parks, using the air space within the campus. The university is already suggesting decked car parking and this is only a small logical jump.
You can read our March 2018 response here.
Following consultation, a completed Masterplan was released in October 2018. It highlights potential on-campus development opportunities, but emphasises that these would still be subject to standard planning procedure and feasibility assessment before development could progress. You can read the 2018 Masterplan here.