Unite Students has agreed to acquire and redevelop a 0.77 acre site in Portsmouth which, subject to planning, is expected to provide around 830 new beds and will help address the shortage of purpose built student accommodation in the city.
It is anticipated that redevelopment activity will be completed in time for the 2016/17 academic year and that returns will be in line with Unite’s targets for regional development.
The site, which has been acquired from Portsmouth City Council, is located at Greetham Street, in the heart of the city. It will represent one of the most significant student accommodation developments in Portsmouth in recent years.
The acquisition, which is subject to planning and funding agreements, will further consolidate Unite’s position as the leading student accommodation provider in Portsmouth. Unite Students has operated in Portsmouth for over ten years and currently provides a home for 1,400 students across three properties which are held on nomination agreements with the University of Portsmouth (UOP) and comprise approximately half of their current accommodation.
The Greetham Street site is close to UOP campus buildings, shops and other local amenities and the proposed development incorporates 14 market trader storage units with associated parking on the ground floor.
Richard Simpson, Managing Director of Property for Unite Students, said: “This is an excellent example of how we are deploying the funds raised earlier in the year by investing in regions where there is short supply and strong demand for student accommodation. The new development will incorporate Unite’s new look and feel which includes a series of innovations and improvements that will create a genuine home for students that help them succeed at university.”
UOP is currently ranked 48 by The Guardian University Guide 2014 and in the top 400 universities in the world by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings.
In 2013, UOP was ranked in the top 25% of English universities for student satisfaction.