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Council to Decide on Cambridge Student Accommodation Policy

Posted by Richard Ward in , ,

Image courtesy of Flickr, Creative Commons

Student accommodation in Cambridge is to be discussed this week with Cambridge City Council to decide on whether to allow proposed changes to the emerging Local Plan.

A report commissioned for the city council has suggested an increasing need for student accommodation in the city.

Although the report revealed that the University of Cambridge accommodates much of its students in university-owned housing, Anglia Ruskin University and other institutions have very little directly-owned accommodation. As a result, students are more likely to live in privately owned halls, shared housing or the family home.

The council's assessment of the study's findings is that the current strategy for student accommodation is largely appropriate but could be improved to address the need for market and social housing, as well as student accommodation.

The report said: "It is recognised that this is a fluid situation, and that there is likely to be a continuing strong supply of new student housing in the city, prompted by the financial attractiveness of this form of development.

However, in part this attractiveness arises out of the level of unsatisfied demand for such accommodation. At this stage, the evidence falls short of proving that there does not remain a need for purpose-built student housing, especially to improve the choice and opportunities for ARU students."

Due to the study, the council will propose some changes to the Local Plan, including the need to confirm that all student accommodation schemes are formally tied to a particular educational institution, which has specific accommodation needs.

The report also proposes the creation of a working group made up from council officers and representatives of higher education institutions, in order to monitor student accommodation and work together.