College's plans for the library are continuing to be held up by objections from local residents from Alexandra Court, the building between 170 and 180 Queen's Gate which overlooks the South Kensington campus.
Residents, who can pay nearly £2,000 per week (yes, week) for a three bedroom flat in the building, scuppered plans for solar shading last month when they complained it was "too dense". College planned to resubmit the application without the solar shading, however it seems there are still objections to the revised plans.
Central to the refurbishment is a new service tower and cooling system, providing some relief from the heat during the summer. Loss of the solar shading will reduce the effectiveness of this system, however there are further objections, presumably to the new chiller unit to be positioned on the roof.
The Union is now calling for students' help to lobby the planning team and local councillors, to ensure that the objections of a few well-off local residents do not block proposals designed to help tens of thousands of students over the next couple of decades.
To help the campaign to make the library cool, students and alumni are invited to contact the Westminster planning team to express support for the library refurbishment, which can be done online or in writing. A model letter is provided on the ICU website.
If you live in the Knightsbridge and Belgravia ward, which includes Beit Quad and Imperial, you can contact your local councillors who are:
Devenish and Roe are both involved with planning. You can find out which ward you live in on the Westminster website. A map of Knightsbridge and Belgravia is also available.
Students and alumni from outside the borough are welcome to write in, however communications from people living within Knightbridge and Belgravia will have the largest effect, followed by those within Westminster generally.