College wants to expand premises
CENTRAL Sussex College is planning to build a four-storey extension to its Crawley campus in a bid to offer state-of-the-art workshop and teaching space.
The college, on College Road, entered a planning application with Crawley Borough Council on June 15 outlining plans to build on part of the campus currently used as a car park.
The building would be used for plumbing, painting and decorating, and carpentry and joinery courses with classrooms and computer rooms for other courses.
This application is the result of a previous masterplan, to completely rebuild the Crawley campus, failing to materialise.
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Although the total rebuild received outline planning approval it was not given Government funding to go ahead.
Instead, Central Sussex chiefs have been working to improve the campus on a more gradual basis.
Sarah Dodwell, marketing director at the college, said: "In the past when we have bid for Government funding we have been unsuccessful because the application was not seen to be 'shovel ready'.
"I think the Government likes an application to be ready to start straight away by having the planning approval already in place.
"We believe there may be more Government funding made available for college capital projects, so this time we have entered the planning application first of all.
There are still lots of ifs and buts because we need the planning application to be accepted and then the opportunity to arise of more funding being made available. At that point we would need the Government to view our plan as one to give backing to."
However, Mrs Dodwell said if the plans were unsuccessful in receiving Government funding it would not necessarily spell the end of the project.
She added: "We would have to take a longer-term approach and may look at alternative funding.
"Another possibility would be to look at what happened with our Haywards Heath campus.
"That was built in three phases and the final phase was funded by the college after Government funding was withdrawn."
Crawley Borough Council's development control committee is expected to make a decision on the application by September 14.