Plans for the introduction of shops and health facilities to the Heslington East campus have been approved.
The proposal was passed on 4 June at a City of York Council Planning Committee, and will go ahead assuming it gains approval from the Secretary of State.
The vote passed by a close margin, with seven voting for the development, and six against.
The plans mean that the campus will now be home to a health centre, restaurant, shop, pharmacy and potentially a dentist. The proposed plan is to move the existing health centre on Heslington West to a new building on Heslington East, while converting the existing building into a new nursery for the children of University students.
In response to the successful meeting, Sam Maguire, YUSU President, said he was “really delighted that the planning has finally been granted. A lot of students worked hard for this to happen and it was by no means an easy victory.
“This will finally bring health facilities at the University of York up to scratch and give the students on Heslington East the retail facilities they need.”
Maguire concluded by echoing the views of many current residents of Heslington East, saying: “I just wish I was around to see them in use.”
City of York Council initially rejected the plans in December due to concerns about parking near the Field Lane roundabout which were voiced by local residents. This setback prompted Maguire to launch a campaign to encourage students to support the cause.
The Student Associations and JCRCs of the three colleges on Heslington East, Langwith, Goodricke and Constantine, were all heavily involved in supporting the campaign.
Alex Byron, President of Langwith College, expressed his happiness at the vote passing, and stated that it wasn’t “just a victory for Hes East, but for all of us and the future of University student services.”
Byron also highlighted the importance of moving forward and addressing concerns with the development, “to ensure we all get what we would like from the new services”.