The University is spending £1million to develop the front of campus.
The area, from The Michael Sadler building to the Great Hall, is closed off to pedestrians until the beginning of the next academic year to make way for the renovations.
Access to the Baines Wing will only be possible via the Great Hall or Parkinson build- ing, and the blue zone car park – which contains a number of disabled parking bays – is completely inaccessible.
Union Affairs Officer Bradley Escorcio said: “It’s great to see the University investing in areas to improve the student experience. Not only will the Plaza development improve accessibility across the differing levels of campus, it will also enhance the look and feel of our spaces.”
A third year student said: “It’s really inconvenient, especially in my final year. I’m also worried it will disrupt the graduation ceremony in the Great Hall.”
Another student, studying Biology, said: “I’d be worried about it making access difficult for disabled students.”
A spokesperson for the University said: “We have provided alternative routes, but appreciate that the work is having an impact on general access to parts of campus, and apologise to students, staff and visitors for any disruption caused.”
They added that Phase 1 of construction is due to complete some time in Spring 2014: “Once Phase 1 is finished the route will be re-opened. The second phase will start during Phase 1 and complete during the summer.”
The proposed design will see the stepped area trans- formed into a circular space with ramp access.
photo: Leeor Ohayon