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Major investment approved for Keele University campus
Planning permission has been approved for a £160m development which will transform student accommodation on the Keele University campus, and provide a major boost to the local region.
Through a new partnership with the University Partnerships Programme (UPP), 2,300 high-quality, affordable rooms will be built on the campus over the next four to five years, in new purpose-built accommodation buildings, ensuring that the University can respond to the demand for high quality on-campus accommodation as it expands from 10,000 to 13,000 students by 2020.
The University’s proposals have evolved over the last twelve months through extensive consultation with local residents, the student community and staff. Expanding within each of the existing Residential Halls, the development will provide four new social spaces that current Keele students themselves helped to design.
Professor Trevor McMillan, Vice Chancellor of Keele University, welcomed the decision:
“This major investment will give Keele students access to some of the best campus accommodation in Britain, making the University an even stronger proposition for prospective students both here in the UK and internationally.
“By ensuring that our campus is fit for the future we’re securing Keele’s position as a leading UK university that is a centre for both excellent teaching and world-class research.
“This investment ensures that Keele can grow and develop, and is great news for Newcastle-under-Lyme as well as the wider region.”
UPP already works with more than a dozen universities across the UK to maintain and run student accommodation, including Kent, Reading, Nottingham, York, Plymouth, Lancaster and Bath.
Sean O'Shea, group chief executive of UPP, said “The University has now been ranked first by the National Student Survey for student satisfaction for three years in a row. Our partnership will enable more students to enjoy Keele’s award-winning campus, and further strengthen the University’s position as a fantastic place in which to both live and learn."
Emily Horsfall, Union Development and Democracy Officer at Keele University's Students' Union, said: “With growing student numbers, it is vital that the accommodation provision on campus is expanded.
“Students and their representatives have been involved in the project discussion and decision-making, and we’re now looking forward to seeing our campus being made even better for our students.”
Work on the development is scheduled to start in mid to late 2017, and will be undertaken in phases in order to keep disruption to a minimum.