Planning victory over crossing

Dudley College has won a planning battle to secure a pedestrian crossing after fears for learner safety.

The Midland college expanded in 2012 to open its Evolve campus, which is used by up to 800 students a-day and situated around 200 metres from its main campus on the other side of the same road.

Councillors from Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council rejected the college’s initial application for a puffin crossing in November 2013 because of concerns over noise and air pollution from queuing traffic and pedestrians. But the college’s appeal with the Planning Inspectorate was approved, overturning the council’s refusal. The inspectorate concluded that safety benefits would “heavily outweigh its adverse effects”.

Principal Lowell Williams said “common sense has prevailed”. “The safety of college users and the wider public is our foremost concern,” he added. The college will cover the estimated £48,000 cost of installing the crossing before the start of 2015/16.

John Millar, acting strategic director for environment, economy and housing at Dudley council, said: “The development control committee had refused the application on the grounds of its detrimental impact on residential properties and the potential impact on air quality. The decision of the planning inspector to allow the appeal is noted.”