When news happens, text BAZ and your photos or videos to 80360. Or contact us by email and phone.
New student accommodation development planned for Winchester
DEVELOPERS are proposing a major expansion of student housing in Winchester.
Geoffrey Osbourne Ltd is hoping to build a 250-bedroom block on the Wykeham Industrial Estate on Moorside Road, Winnall.
The developers say the scheme will help ease the controversial ‘studentification’ of estates such as Stanmore and Winnall which has seen scores of family homes converted into flats.
Amanda Sutton, director of planning consultants Neame Sutton, said: “[Osbourne] found a real need to build student accommodation. We knew about the council’s initiative to free up affordable housing and this is the answer.
“I think if we were in a residential area then we may get some backlash but we are out of the way up on the edge of the city.”
Ms Sutton said as the development is next to Eramus Park student village, their target market would be School of Art students.
There is currently no buyer for the development but Ms Sutton said it would be ideal for the universities of Winchester and also Southampton, which runs Winchester School of Art.
Paul Conway, of Winchester-based Architecture PLB, said the size of the building was needed to justify the planned 24-hour management service. It includes kitchens serving seven-nine people as well as en-suite studios.
Mr Conway said: “There is a model used by Winchester University based on flat clusters which we’ve developed. The links to Erasmus Park was a big factor but being open to the countryside was also an important factor to the scheme.
“We’ve kept the dialogue open between ourselves and Winchester City Council.”
However, some of those attending the public exhibition of the plans last Thursday (September 5), were hesitant about the location and the design.
City councillor Chris Pines said: “They’ve got a lot of work to do to make sure it’s not visually impacting. They’ve designed it around student groups but it’s not ideal for young people living singly.
“You’ve got 250 extra people in that area so they’ve got to get involved with someone like park and ride because that part of town is not well served.
“I’m not against it but I think they’ve got a lot to do before hand. It may take the pressure off the demand for single accommodation in the city.”
George Osbourne was the developer for Sparkford Hall, for Winchester University, which met with opposition from local residents in 2010. This current proposal is for an industrial estate some way from local homes.
Also proposing the scheme is SRIL Moorside Road.
Comments are closed on this article.