It’s official. A university WILL be coming to Croydon – and it could be open as soon as 2020.

It is something that has been on the cards for a while and today (Tuesday, March 12) a partnership between London South Bank University (LSBU) and Croydon Council was announced.

The plan would be for LSBU to open a centre for higher education in the heart of the town centre.

It would be based in existing buildings in the town centre rather than a brand new building.

But for full details of the exciting new development we will have to wait until the summer.

This is when a paper outlining the full plan is expected to go to the council’s cabinet.

The hope is that a university centre would mean more opportunities for all residents, especially for Croydon’s 93,000 under-18s.

LSBU is a leading university for graduate employment with nearly 89% of graduates in professional graduate-level jobs or further study six months after graduation.

The new partnership is the first step in council plans to create a ‘Croydon Creative Campus’ – a “global centre of higher education” in the town centre.

Councillor Tony Newman, Croydon Council leader, said: “This is fantastic news for Croydon’s future – as our borough grows and regenerates, we want our centres to develop as a rich mix of business, learning and creativity.

“Croydon’s regeneration is already delivering a wealth of opportunities for our residents, with new jobs, homes and facilities.

“This partnership is another, incredibly important development, as it will improve access to further education for residents of all ages, but especially our 93,000 young people, significantly boosting their skills and economic prospects.”

LSBU vice chancellor Professor Dave Phoenix said the partnership will mean high quality higher education for residents and employers in the borough.

He added: “We believe that a new Croydon university centre offer would make a vibrant and vital contribution to local learners and employers, and provide an exciting model for education in the UK.”