The University of Reading has submitted plans to redevelop its St Patrick’s Hall site. The multi-million pound redevelopment will provide students with an upgraded mix of high-quality room types and rents to suit student needs.
The planning application was submitted to Reading Borough Council on 23rd June following in-depth consultation with the local community, students and staff.
The redevelopment of St Patrick’s Hall is the next phase of investment into the University of Reading’s student halls accommodation, a project made possible by the University’s long-term partnership with University Partnerships Programme (UPP).
The University, in partnership with UPP, are investing £275m in high quality halls and facilities to meet growing demand for affordable, on-campus accommodation and provide a greater choice of accommodation types to suit all budgets for both new and returning students.
Following the redevelopment the number of student rooms available in St Patrick’s will increase from 300 to just over 1,000, rising to accommodate the record undergraduate intake of recent years. The redevelopment will include the provision of improved facilities, focused at the centre of the accommodation with catering, retail and extensive social space, creating a campus environment in which to live and learn.
Colin Robbins, Director of Estates and Facilities, Head of Function, at University of Reading said: “It is important that the University of Reading offers the high quality accommodation that matches our world-class teaching and research.
“In a competitive higher education market, we must provide a greater range of affordable accommodation to students and delivering this project with our accommodation partner UPP will ensure this.”
From the outset of the plans to redevelop St Patrick’s Hall the University have taken the issue of heritage very seriously, commissioning expert evaluations of the site. As part of the design evolution, the University made the decision to retain the Edwardian houses fronting Northcourt Avenue, as they contribute to the street frontage.
The proposals have evolved through consultation with the local community, residents, staff and students. The University of Reading have listened to feedback and updated the designs wherever possible. In response to these consultations, leading architects, Willmore Iles, have created high quality designs that seek to respect and reflect the local character and reference the red brick style and the courtyard layout of the existing buildings. In addition, the plans have evolved to include, the retention of more open space, a reduction in the proposed building heights and the planting of additional trees.