An MP has urged ministers to examine Birmingham City University’s controversial plans to move to a new £125 million campus.
Perry Barr Labour MP Khalid Mahmood said the university’s plan to close its base in his constituency and relocate to the city centre would be “an economic and social disaster” for the area.
Now he has written to Universities Minister David Willets to question whether the move to Eastside offered good value for money.
And, in a hard-hitting letter to university bosses, Mr Mahmood accused the university of failing to consider the impact its plans would have on the local economy.
He wrote: “I have written to David Willets to raise my concerns as to whether the Eastside development represents the best value for taxpayers’ money and whether proper consideration has been given to the implications for the constituency and its residents.”
Halls of residence for nearly 1,000 students and its £8.5 million Doug Ellis Sports Centre are set to remain in Perry Barr, which has been the university’s main home since the 1970s.
And a university spokesman pledged the institution would not abandon the suburb and said officials would meet councillors at a district committee meeting tomorrow.
“By creating a ‘smart campus’ at Eastside, the University will be based at a gateway to high-tech technology and international transport links,” he said.
“It will be highly flexible and responsive to the needs of its students and business partners while providing far more efficient and environmentally-friendly learning accommodation.
“The university still recognises its commitments to the Perry Barr community.
“We will explain that the move of teaching and learning resources to Eastside will be phased and the university is looking to operate its existing residential facilities, such as student accommodation and the Doug Ellis Sports centre, at Perry Barr.”