SOLIHULL College & University Centre could open a new campus near the UK Central Arden Cross HS2 Interchange Station, Principal John Callaghan has revealed.
A key element in the HS2 masterplan, Arden Cross will form a point where the line from London splits to head to Leeds and Manchester on dedicated north east and North West routes.
It is also from Arden Cross that a spur will take passengers to the Birmingham city centre terminus at Curzon Street, with a dedicated link to Birmingham Airport.
After receiving Royal Assent, construction work can now begin on HS2 with an estimated first-phase completion of 2026 and Mr Callaghan is keen for Solihull College & University Centre to meet any higher education needs in the Arden Cross area.
“I would like to think we could have a presence at Arden Cross as we can offer higher education and advanced training including digital technologies,” Mr Callaghan told Solihull BID’s InSolihull magazine.
“The new HS2 station is ideally located for an educational presence and we could see a new campus there at some stage.”
In total, 70 per cent of the UK population are within a two-hour travel time of Arden Cross, a number that will see a significant increase following the delivery of the first phase of HS2.
“I’m very optimistic about HS2,” added Mr Callaghan.
“I do understand it will be disruptive and we need to consider the people who will be displaced by the project but for far too long this country has been focused on the South East and if we want to re-balance the economy then we can’t do it with the current infrastructure.
“I see HS2 as a huge opportunity with the Arden Cross proposals and the Interchange in Solihull being the first stop from London.
“There is a feeling of a renaissance in the Midlands that is unique. It’s the most exciting place to be. We need to capitalise on this.”