Student hub plan poses Preston supply and demand query

A cross section of the Sizer House plans
A cross section of the Sizer House plans

Plans for a vast student hub are due before Preston’s planning committee weeks after concerns were voiced about the number of units planned in the city.

A bid to build the 425 room Sizer House complex on Moor Lane will be determined by elected members next week.

Officers have said the project can be approved if developers Pillars Sizer Ltd agree to pay £6,000 for ongoing monitoring of the building’s travel plan.

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This is the developer’s attempt to reduce the number of private car trips created by the building and promote sustainable modes of transport.

However, two recent applications to have gone through the committee have caused councillors to voice concerns about an influx of student units in the city.

Two developments - Canterbury Hall and the Tramshed - have applied to modify aspect of their planning permission to allow them to open to keyworkers.

And two further student developments have this week submitted bids to the council for similar permissions.

Councillors have questioned whether supply of student housing is therefore outweighing demand across Preston.

At a recent meeting, Coun John Swindells (Labour) told colleagues: “We need to look at student accommodation and where it stands, whether we’ve reached a point where we’ve got too much.”