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New 774-bedroom student block to be given green light in Belfast

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An artist's impression of the new student block 'Nelson Street' planned for Belfast

An artist's impression of the new student block 'Nelson Street' planned for Belfast

An artist's impression of a recreation area at a new student block 'Nelson Street' planned for Belfast

An artist's impression of a recreation area at a new student block 'Nelson Street' planned for Belfast

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An artist's impression of the new student block 'Nelson Street' planned for Belfast

Planning permission for the 12-storey, 774 bedroom student accommodation block in Belfast is set to be given the green light this week.

First submitted back in 2016, the plans — drawn up by planning agents Turley for Olympian Homes in partnership with Brookfield Student Real Estate — are for the development on a site bounded by Great Georges Street, Nelson Street and Little York Street.

The 245,000 square foot student block, to be called 'Nelson Street', will have shared sports and recreation facilities and a roof terrace.

Plans for the development have been delayed in recent years due to the delivery of the Ulster University City Campus being pushed back.

Since 2016, the application has been amended on several occasions, however work is set to start “imminently” once final planning approval is given, according to a briefing paper drawn up for members of Belfast City Council's (BCC) Planning Committee, which meets on Tuesday.

“The ground floor will include a shared sports and recreational facility located centrally within the site. This will replace a previously approved courtyard,” the briefing paper reads.

“The facilities will be available for use by students and staff of the adjacent further educational institution either working or studying at the nearby university or residing in the existing PBMSA (purpose built managed student accommodation) schemes in the York Street/Nelson Street area."

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Permission has also been sought for the student block to be used as short-stay accommodation outside of traditional term times for further ands higher education staff, or for those attending events hosted by a further or higher education institution.

According to a pre-application community consultation report submitted in support of the plans, concerns were raised about the height of the building, the cost of accommodation, the lack of cycling infrastructure on site and the potential noise impact.

In response to these concerns, the BCC briefing paper states that dedicated cycle storage facilities have been provided at ground floor level, construction environmental impact plans (CEMP) have been submitted to help address potential disturbances during the construction phase, and a management plan will be secured to address wider amenity issues.

The student block will be managed by Student Roost.

“The management company will manage the accommodation with one simple objective — to provide exceptional service to the clients whose properties they manage...” one planning document reads.

“The teams will be led by professional and experienced accommodation managers, who will be responsible for the day-to-day running of each site, marketing to potential new tenants, health and safety compliance and liaising with Universities, the local community and other stakeholders.

“Support will be provided to the site-based staff by a specialist central services department, whose areas of expertise provide the accommodation teams with a detailed delivery framework, ensuring consistency of service delivery in line with recognised good industry practice.”



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