CONSTRUCTION of a pedestrian footbridge over a major road has begun - and some people are not impressed.

The bridge over Lewes Road in Brighton, has begun to take shape this weekend with the western staircase being installed.

The footbridge will provide pedestrians with a crossing over one of the city's busiest roads as part of a huge University of Brighton project.

But it has proved controversial on social media with several Facebook users responding to a photo post of the construction.

"It looks an eyesore," said one user.

Another said: "Is this because the students have no road sense so a traffic crossing wouldn’t work?!"

One person also said: "So we have all got to suffer so the students can cross the road. What's the matter can't they f****** push a button and cross like everybody else? Makes my blood boil we should all suffer."

The Argus: Artist's impression of what the footbridge will look like.Artist's impression of what the footbridge will look like.

However, many commenters were pleased with the idea, with one saying: "I think it looks well good down there now. And why not 'studentville'.

"There are two universities close together on that stretch of road... it makes massive sense for student accommodation to be built there.

"People keep moaning about students in their areas - they'll be far more out of the way there so that should be a plus for those who don't like students, won't it?

"The bridge does look an eyesore now but it's not even finished - wait and see the end result. And it's a brilliant idea - people can cross the road safely and traffic will keep flowing."

Another said: "Great idea. Loved the one down Eastern Road years ago."

Road closures and traffic flow changes will be put in place along a stretch of Lewes Road from this weekend to the last weekend of January to allow the installation of the bridge to go ahead safely.

A traffic contraflow is in force between Coombe Road to just north of Natal Road during normal daytime hours again today as the staircase is installed.

A full closure of the same section of the road will take place next weekend, from midnight on January 28 through until 6am on January 31, as the bridge itself is lifted into place, with engineers set to work round the clock through the second weekend to carry out the installation as quickly as possible.

Traffic diversions will operate via the A27/A23 and there will also be changes to some bus routes.

The footpath will link the university's new student accommodation towers, its school of business and law, and the Preston Barracks development, which includes hundreds of new homes and an innovation hub.

Matt Kitson, director of estates at the university, said: "We're proud of the role the University of Brighton plays in the city's success.

"I know the investment we've made at Moulsecoomb will have a major impact - not just on our university community but on our neighbours, local businesses and all our partners and stakeholders across Brighton and beyond."

The pedestrian crossing below the bridge is staying, the bridge is largely a link between the university buildings.

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