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16th Nov 2018
Plans have been submitted to develop the St Stephens Towers in Norwich into accommodation for 740 students.
Formerly used as offices for Aviva, the building sits behind the shops in St Stephens Street.
Developers Crown Student Living want to refurbish the towers, which have remained vacant for eight years, in addition to adding a further two floors to the current eight storeys.
The plans also propose building a new link between the two towers as well as a new route through the back of one of the shops, which would enable the public to reach the bus station from St Stephens Street.
The accommodation, if given the go ahead, will be made available to students at the University of East Anglia (UEA) and the Norwich University of Arts.
Commenting on the plans, developers said: "There is an evidenced need for student accommodation across the city and these dedicated purpose-built rooms will go some way in addressing that shortage.
"Subject to planning approval being granted it is programmed to have the redevelopment proposals completed by August 2019."
The developers also argued the redevelopment of the existing towers will add significant vibrancy and social benefits to the area, in addition to providing further choice to students in the city.
The application has the support of both the UEA and the UEA's students' union. Roger Bond, the UEA's director of estates and facilities, said the absence of purpose-built student housing in a city of Norwich's size was unusual and the development would help.
The accommodation will consist of a mix of studios, two person apartments, and cluster flats of between two and nine beds.
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