Student Accommodation Planned for Liverpool's Ropewalks

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Student accommodation could be built on a vacant site in the centre of Liverpool's Ropewalks district if recently submitted plans are approved.

The Slater Street plot was previously home to a four-storey building, which was demolished way back in the 1980s. Now plans submitted to the council have earmarked the site for student accommodation.

The application submitted to Liverpool City Council said Seel Street Properties Ltd aspires to create good quality student accommodation located in the city centre.

Under the proposed plans, the developers are looking to create a four-storey building, consisting of two five-bedroom cluster flats and three studio rooms. Along with the student accommodation there will also be space for an office.

Smith Young Architecture has been working on the plans and documents provided to the council said of the scheme: "The new building has been designed to respect and reflect the character of the individuality of the existing focal buildings, and following the tradition of these early/late Victorian buildings in their innovative use of traditional materials, but in a more modern contemporary manner."

Substantial Student Accommodation Scheme Proposed for Coventry

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Plans have been put forward to develop a large-scale student accommodation scheme on the site of a former garage near the centre of Coventry.

Able to accommodate 301 students, the scheme calls for the development of the former T Joyce & Sons Garage to the east of Paradise Street. The student housing will be split across blocks ranging between three and 14 storeys and will come equipped with communal facilities, cycle parking, a landscaped courtyard and pedestrian access.

The application has been submitted by London Gateway Ltd with the buildings being designed by London-based architects Fraser Brown McKenna.

If given the go-ahead, the accommodation would be managed and operated by AXO Student Living, who already run student accommodation across Coventry.

The design and access statement, submitted as part of the application, said: "The application site is located on the south-eastern edge of the city centre and is within very close proximity to Coventry University's facilities.

"Thus, it is considered that the site is ideally located in sustainability terms to meet the identified need for further student accommodation.

"The adjacent student scheme at 15-23 Paradise Street and the recently granted student scheme abutting the site to the north demonstrates that the principle for student accommodation is supported in the area and that the use successfully exists in this location."

The document also went on to suggest the scheme would enhance the previously run-down site and help regenerate the area, whilst also freeing up traditional housing in the city.

Historic Dundee Mill Could Be Replaced by Student Accommodation

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A historic jute mill in Dundee, thought to be one of the world's oldest, could be demolished to make way for student accommodation.

Queen Victoria Works, built in 1828, has been derelict since it was shut down in the 1980s.

Plans have now been put forward to develop the site into student housing for up to 250 students.

The application is to be put up for public consultation with an open exhibition planned for July.

Situated in Brook Street, the mill is Category B-listed by Historic Scotland but could be demolished if plans are approved by the council.

Designs have been put forward by architects, James Paul Associates on behalf of Scot Properties Ltd.

Commenting on the application, Angus Paul from James Paul Associates said: "At this stage we're still putting together the final plans so it's still early days. Our proposal is to demolish some if not all of the buildings at the site.

"We're still at pre-planning stage but we envisage up to 250 rooms being created for students in a three-storey building."

Under the plans the student rooms will consist of self-contained studios, equipped with a small kitchen, shower and bedroom area.

Concerns had been raised over the safety of the site, due to the mill's current state of repair, which will likely mean it cannot be preserved.

Ahead of the formal application being submitted, the developers have asked for the public to give their views on the plans, which will take place at the proposed consultation next month.

GSA Expands into Spanish Student Accommodation

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Global Student Accommodation (GSA) has announced its expansion into Spain after having acquired a Spanish student accommodation portfolio.

The portfolio consists of 914 beds across three properties, plus a further 1,320 beds currently in development, which were acquired from funds run by Oaktree Capital Management.

Commenting on the deal, Nicholas Porter, founder and chairman of GSA, said: "We continue to deliver on our rapid European expansion plans, targeting higher education markets where there is a substantial supply-demand imbalance.

"Our brands are carefully targeted towards students, capturing the demand for good quality purpose-built student accommodation combined with excellent customer services."

All of the operational beds are located in central Madrid. The portfolio consists of Galdos, with 370 beds in the centre of the city's main university campus, El Faro with 358 beds in a newly developed building, and Claraval, a prime city centre location comprising of 186 beds.

A further building will be added to the Madrid portfolio when the Lope de Vega University Residence is opened in September, which will be able to accommodation 468 domestic and international students.

Alongside the operational residences, the deal also includes two further development schemes in Barcelona. The two sites are expected to be operational by 2019 and will bring the total number of beds under management in Spain to 2,234.

The expansion into the Spanish market will see GSA also take on the Nexo Residencias brand, making it the third in Europe for GSA, alongside The Student Housing Company and Uninest Student Residences.

Falmouth Council Appose Student Housing Earmarked for the Ocean Bowl

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Plans to develop purpose-built student accommodation on the Ocean Bowl site in Falmouth have been described as inappropriate, due to their negative impact on the docks and tourism.

Falmouth Town Council have opposed the proposals put forward from Rengen, marking the second application submitted to develop the site that's come under fire. The latest application calls for the construction of 190 student beds, a substantial reduction on the 249 proposed the first time around.

Site is currently owned by Pendennis Shipyard and plans to sell the grounds to developers Rengen, who had wanted to build two blocks of student accommodation up to six storeys tall, along with facilities such as a gym, cinema and restaurant.

Despite the most recent application representing a reduction on the initially proposed scheme, the designs still received a significant number of objections. Those opposed to the scheme included Falmouth Town Council and Falmouth Docks, which suggested the development could jeopardise the site's future.

Falmouth Town Council's planning committee have recommended the latest application is also refused.

They added it would go against the Port Masterplan, while adversely affect dock operations. They also argued it would have a negative impact on tourism given its proximity to the iconic Falmouth Hotel.

Documents submitted as part of the latest application said: "This entirely new proposal addresses many concerns raised in response to a previous application on this site, which is now the subject of an appeal.

"This new proposal is designed with a greater sensitivity to the historic fabric of Falmouth."

A final decision is expected on the plans by the end of July.

Major Student Accommodation Development Approved in Dublin

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Developers have been given the go ahead to build a major student housing scheme on one of northside's landmark shopping centres.

Dublin City Council planners have granted permission to build 500 student apartments above the shopping centre, which will primarily cater for students attending the DIT Grangegorman campus.

The 1984-built centre, opposite the site of a former cattle market off the North Circular Road, adjoins part of the DIT Grangegorman campus.

It's hoped the Dublin Institute of Technology will transform the fortunes of the inner-city close to Smithfield. The first new building constructed on the Grangegorman campus was opened in March this year and will be home to the institution's postgraduate researches as well as those looking to commercialise their research.

In total by the end of 2017 the campus will accommodate around 10,000 students. These numbers are expected to swell to around 20,000 upon completion in 2020.

Under the proposals, Park Shopping Centre will be demolished and re-built to include a new shopping centre as well as student accommodation. Tesco will also remain as anchor tenants.

Despite the application ultimately being approved, locals had raised concerns with the loss of privacy as well as noise during construction, and the scale and volume of the development.

31 Student Beds Proposed for Exeter

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Plans have been put forward to develop The Hub, situated at the Mary Arches Street and Bartholomew Street East junction in Exeter, into student housing.

Under the proposals, the 1950's building could be demolished and turned into a 31-bed student accommodation.

Plans put forward to Exeter City Council outline the developers aim of creating uninterrupted student accommodation along Bartholomew Street East. The same developer already has a scheme underway located directly opposite the proposed site.

Both developments would be branded The Neighbourhood and the new scheme will be an exact copy of the pre-existing development site.

According to developers, the plans are a direct response to the growing number students studying within the City and the significant need for student accommodation.

Documents submitted as part of the application, said: "This is set against the wider need for housing land within Exeter and the opportunity provided by such purpose-built student accommodation to 'free up' traditional homes in local communities for families."

Those students living in the proposed accommodation will have access to facilities at Quintana Gate, which includes a gym, study rooms, communal areas and a concierge.

The planning statement concluded the development was in line with relevant local and national planning policy and will provide high quality student housing within a sustainable location.

BlackRock Acquires Development Site in Sheffield

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BlackRock Real Assets has acquired another student accommodation development in Sheffield, bringing the total number of beds in its European Property Fund to more than 2,100 across five schemes.

The site, located in Bramall Lane, sits adjacent to the existing Sheffield asset acquired by BlackRock Real Estate in 2016 and will be developed to provide a further 190 student beds.

The additional student accommodation will be placed under a nominations agreement with Sheffield Hallam University. Its hoped the development will be able to benefit from operational efficiencies due its locality to the adjacent site, and will be developed and managed by Host-Students.

Ground works have already begun and the development is due to for completion in time for the 2018-19 academic year.

Its anticipated that the road, which currently separates both schemes, will be blocked off to the public and a glass canopy constructed to connect the two sites.

The investment represents the eighth acquisition for the fund since it was established, which has been funded by a broad range of institutional investors from 16 different countries. In total, the fund has invested EUR 700 million of its available EUR 1.75 billion capital.

Commenting on the latest acquisition, Thomas Muller, Portfolio Manager for BlackRock's European real estate business, said: "We are very pleased with the progress since the final close and I am particularly delighted to announce this latest acquisition in the UK market, which is reflective of our strategy to continue the aggregation of our student accommodation portfolio in the UK and Ireland. With well-located schemes in London, Dublin, Leeds and Sheffield we are creating a very attractive portfolio."

Abandoned Belfast Office Could Become Student Accommodation

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A disused office building in Belfast could be transformed in student housing to meet the growing demand for purpose-built student accommodation.

Situated on Donegall Street beside the Ulster University's Belfast campus, the Marshal Building is on the market with offers being sought in the region of £425,000.

Consisting of 8,724 sq ft, the building is currently arranged to provide a self-contained retail unit on the ground floor, with office accommodation on the three upper floors.

Subject to the correct planning permission, the offices could be used for a variety of uses, including residential or student housing.

The building is expected to achieve significant interest, with director of CBRE Lisa McAteer adding: "Properties within this vicinity have been attracting a high level of interest due to ongoing redevelopment and regeneration. We are anticipating significant interest in these properties, and it will be very exciting to see the attention the area will attract."

Elsewhere, work continues on the new Ulster University, which is due for completion in 2019. The £250 million investment will see the campus increase in size to 75,000 sq m and will welcome up to 15,000 students and staff, creating 8,000 jobs.

Ms McAteer added: "Within the next five years this area will be unrecognisable given the major investment in Royal Exchange as well as the completion of the Ulster University campus and the former Belfast Telegraph building."

323-bed Scheme Proposed for Cardiff

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A planning application has been submitted to Cardiff City Council to develop more than 300 student flats at a new "landmark" building on the site of a former office building in Trade Street.

Proposals put forward by Dovey Estates call for the existing Suffolk House building to be demolished to make way for four blocks of accommodation between one and eight storeys tall.

The development will consist of 75 studios, and cluster flats of between six and ten beds with the scheme having 323 student beds in total.

Also included in the designs are facilities such as a gym, common room, cafeteria, roof garden and 130 cycle parking spaces.

According to the documentation submitted as part of the application: "The proposed development would contribute positively towards the shortfall of student accommodation in Cardiff, and potentially reduce pressure on the housing market.

"The development takes cues from the local context, including the new development at Central Square. The proposal will enhance the varied local vernacular as well as creating a suitable landmark building."

The site of the proposed student housing is located close to the University of Glamorgan, Cardiff University and the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. It also falls within the Cardiff Central Enterprise Zone.

A decision is expected on the application by the end of July.