The Students’ Union executive is in talks with Transport for Greater Manchester to create a new bus route from Withington to the North Campus.
The campaign to introduce the new route is the brainchild of Diversity Officer Omar Aljuhani. It aims to improve the provision of transport for students living and studying on the north campus, and to ensure student safety and disabled access.
In an interview with The Mancunion, Aljuhani outlined his reasons for demanding the new bus route.
“I was a student in the north campus for the last four years. I’d been living in different accommodation on the campus, and [I] found that the north campus is really disconnected with the south campus,” he said. “Transportation is an obvious problem.”
Aljuhani also explained that he does not see the current situation as being fair for disabled students living on the north campus.
He added, “University is a full experience, and one of the university’s targets is to provide a ‘great student experience’, and I feel that the North Campus has been completely disengaged from that.
“Logically transport should be provided by the University, not even just from the station to the Students’ Union, but to Fallowfield as well. Am I asking for a lot? I don’t think so.
“The 147 is not doing its job.”
Aljuhani has launched a petition on change.org., attracting a large number of positive comments, and over 200 signatures.
One supporter, Roxanne Neall, argued that “as a student at North Campus I know that many of the students who study there live in Fallowfield…and take a convoluted route to Sackville Street, a bus route would just make sense for the students. Piccadilly Station would also be convenient for all Manchester residents as it would be much shorter than the other options at the moment.”
Anna Thorne wrote in support, “I want to stay safe when getting the bus to and from university and it will make travelling a lot more convenient and quicker.”
Another student, Arplan Saluja, wrote on the petition “I live near Sackville Street so this initiative would prove very beneficial for me as I spend a lot of time in Alan Gilbert learning commons till late and I will not have to walk alone in the dark at night after studying. Furthermore, I would love for there to be a direct transport from my place to places such as Fallowfield and so on.”
The Mancunion also spoke to students who frequently have to commute to the north campus.
Hannah Razlin, who studies mechanical engineering and lives in Withington, told The Mancunion she was, “definitely in favour of it”, describing the current bus route as “a pain. It’s so busy.”
Callum Hunt however, also studying mechanical engineering, is sceptical. He explained that “I will support the proposition of a bus route between Fallowfield and the North Campus but I do not see it as necessary because it is only a small walk between getting off the bus and reaching the North Campus.
“There is already a bus that stops at the North Campus which is the 147, free for students to use, but it would require a change over at the Students Union.”
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