The campus will be built on a seven-acre site next to Bristol Temple Meads railway station, which includes the derelict former Royal Mail sorting office and part of Arena Island.
It will provide space for 800 staff, external partners and 3,000 students, with accommodation on the site for up to 1,500 undergraduates and postgraduates.
The university hopes to welcome students to the campus in 2021/22, while members of the public will also be encouraged to use the new public spaces at the site.
The outline planning permission covers the proposed density and scale of the buildings, as well as access to the site, rather than specific details about the appearance and layout of the campus.
These plans will be submitted at a later stage of the application process.
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The university revised its initial proposals for the development following feedback from the local council, local residents and other partners.
The main changes included reducing the height and changing the layout of the proposed student accommodation buildings on Arena Island, which range from 12 to 21 storeys.
"We are committed to delivering a world-class centre for education, research, partnership and innovation that will be a success story not just for the university, but for the city, its businesses, communities and citizens,” said Guy Orpen, deputy vice-chancellor at the University of Bristol.
"Our vision is for an open and welcoming campus, with high-quality buildings and inspiring public spaces.
“We want citizens and visitors to spend time here, whether it's relaxing by the waterside, visiting a café, taking part in a workshop or working with the university to develop innovations for societal benefit."