University College Dublin (UCD) Student Accomodation
This week, University College Dublin (UCD) lodged a planning application seeking permission for the development of over 3,000 new student accommodation bedspaces. UCD is the first applicant to pursue planning permission through the new ‘Strategic Housing Development’ (SHD) planning application process.
The SHD route is intended to ‘fast track’ residential developments of more than 100 houses/apartments and student accommodation schemes of more than 200 bedspaces. Its purpose is to address the housing crisis in Ireland by shortening the time between the completion of design and the commencement of construction. FAC previously provided an explanation and timeframe for the delivery of schemes through this process; it can be viewed here.
UCD’s proposal, which seeks a 10-year permission for completion, will effectively double its student accommodation capacity. It includes a range of housing types – apartments, halls of residence and studios – to meet the different needs and wants of students. However, the scheme will provide more than just housing. An auditorium, dining hall, food hall, shops, gym, health and well-being centre, study rooms and lounge rooms will also be included. This will create a liveable and integrated part of the campus. Full details are available at: http://ucdplanning.ie/
There has been limited additional supply of student accommodation near UCD (the State’s largest higher level educational institution) in recent years, with most private providers opting for locations in Dublin city centre where they can more easily provide for / attract students attending a greater number of universities, colleges and ITs. With the National Student Accommodation Strategy identifying a shortfall of nearly 18,000 student bed spaces in Dublin in 2017, this proposal will be welcome news to students and parents alike.
Importantly, the proposal will also alleviate some pressure in the private rental market by providing students with further residential options. By students opting for purpose-built student accommodation rather than houses or apartments in the standard private rental sector, properties will free-up for non-students. The inclusion of studio units in UCD’s proposal will also broaden its residential offer and ensure that there is an additional housing type available for mature and graduate students who prefer greater levels of independence and privacy.
FAC has conducted extensive work relating to the student accommodation sector in Ireland; researching national supply and demand trends, undertaking community engagement, supporting the preparation of EIAs (EIARs) and planning applications, and writing socio-economic impact reports. Our research has also featured in The Irish Times and The Sunday Business Post. Should you have any queries please do not hesitate to get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org