City to review student accommodation

The council is to set up a task group to review the amount of student accommodation in Liverpool, it was announced this week.

It comes after a host of developers have moved in on the city in recent years, creating large scale student flats in the city centre which are generally good quality, with a range of facilities and close to universities.

The number of students in the city region is growing, with some establishments reporting annual growth in new admissions of up to 18%.

Currently the number studying in the city region is around 50,000 – equivalent to the population of Torquay or Inverness – with the bulk attending Liverpool’s three largest universities.

The review by Liverpool City Council will examine what impact the conversion of city centre sites is having on other competing land uses such as businesses and retail, as well as the infrastructure of the area.

The council will call on student bodies, developers and university representatives to gain a well-rounded view on the projects currently being undertaken as well as those being proposed.

The aim is to reach conclusions on: The suitability and viability of the current student accommodation offer in the city centre; the need for growth to meet future demand; the impact on the city centre and other affected areas of continuing to grow the accommodation

Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson said:

“I have asked for this review because, although we very much welcome and value the contribution that students make to the city, we need to be mindful of the recent rapid growth in student accommodation, and the knock on effects it could have should there be any marked fluctuations in demand.

“It is crucial we have a diverse mix of uses of buildings in the city centre for residents, businesses, students and visitors alike.”

Cllr Ann O’Byrne, Cabinet member for housing, added:

“Liverpool is hugely popular with students because we have fantastic universities and the city is known as a friendly and welcoming place with a vibrant culture and night life.

“We very much welcome them, and many of them choose to stay on after their studies and make the city their permanent home. This review will help guide us in making sure we have the right amount of accommodation in the right places.”

A report recommending the setting up of the task group will be considered by the Cabinet on Thursday April 2. If approved, the review group will agree a final report and recommendations in May which will then be considered by the Cabinet.”

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