Ex-Manchester United stars' Stretford university plan revised

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The university will offer sport, media and business courses, say UA92

Members of Manchester United's "Class of '92" have revised plans to build a university and a 20-storey student village following a consultation.

The University Academy '92 (UA92) is part of a £170m Trafford Council plan for the Greater Manchester area.

Responding to the consultation, locals said the proposed "ugly tower block" would be "intrusive" and an "eyesore".

Trafford Council said the accommodation block had been scrapped and there would be "ongoing engagement" about the plan.

UA92 is fronted by former Manchester United stars Gary and Phil Neville, Ryan Giggs, Nicky Butt and Paul Scholes and takes its name from the year they started their careers at the club.

'Acceptable compromise'

If approved by councillors, the university will offer sport, media and business courses and cater for up to 6,500 students as part of Lancaster University, in partnership with Trafford Council and Trafford College.

"Low rise" student accommodation, new homes and leisure facilities are also part of the plan, which would see the main campus located on the site of the former Kellogg's building on Talbot Road.

Image source, Google
Image caption,
Grade II listed art deco Essoldo cinema will be incorporated into the regeneration scheme

Trafford Council's wider plan includes proposals to redevelop part of Stretford Mall and bring the former Grade II listed art deco Essoldo cinema on Chester Road back into use.

Respondents to the consultation said there was a lack of a plan for an "enhanced evening economy" and pointed to the poor quality of the physical environment and vacant buildings.

Stretford resident Philippa Hartley said the proposed changes were "probably an acceptable compromise" but added she had concerns about the integration of "a huge transient population".

Image source, Google
Image caption,
Part of Stretford Mall will be demolished and redeveloped under the scheme

Trafford Council, which will consider the new plans on Monday, said it was committed to "ongoing engagement", but the redevelopment would "drive economic growth".

The five former players have diversified their careers since they retired from playing, purchasing Salford City FC in 2014 and opening a hotel alongside the Old Trafford stadium they once played inside a year later.

In July, Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs's £200m plans to redevelop part of Manchester were also revised after criticism from conservationists.

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