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PBSA update - Coventry scheme in works and major deal agreed

Phase one of The Oaks, a student development constructed by Howard Ward Associates (HWA) in Coventry, has completed.

The building, known as Oaks 1, will bring 378 new student rooms to the area in a mixture of 288 cluster bedrooms and 90 studios – all within convenient walking distance to the University of Warwick.

The scheme also benefits from over 6,800 sq ft of amenity space, comprising an open-plan common room and games room, gym and virtual training areas, study areas and social spaces, and has provided significant contributions towards the sustainable transport infrastructure in the area.


Developed by McLaren Property, together with project managers Stace and Corstorphine + Wright Architects, the project was forward-funded by Student Roost who now operate the accommodation.

Phases two and three – which include two further buildings Oaks 2 and Oaks 3 – are currently under construction and are set to deliver a total of 1,000 student rooms and studios.

The Oaks is the only purpose-built student accommodation scheme adjacent to the University of Warwick.

Dan Bailey, director at HWA, comments: “We are pleased to be continuing our long-standing working relationship with McLaren Property and the rest of the supply team on this significant project in Coventry.”

“As the only purpose-built, large-scale student accommodation in the area, this will provide much-needed, quality rooms and studios for students to enjoy as they attend the University of Warwick. The accommodation couldn’t be in a better location, bordering the main campus with everything students need within easy reach.”

He concludes: “We’re proud to be continuing our work in the Midlands, particularly in these challenging times, and look forward to seeing the next phase of the project progress.”

In other PBSA news, the aforementioned Student Roost has agreed a major deal with Summix Capital and Watkin Jones Group to purchase two new prime student accommodation properties in York and Bristol.

The properties are due to be completed in time for the 2022/23 academic year, under a £70 million forward-funding deal agreed with developer Watkin Jones Group.

The deal includes a 291-bed property at Unity Street in Bristol and a 368-bed student development at Frederick House in York. Both sites are well-located and are considered prime regeneration sites within their cities. Construction is due to start this month.

Stephen Rigby, chief investment officer at Student Roost, comments: “It’s fantastic news that we’ve been able to agree this deal with Summix Capital and Watkin Jones, particularly in the current environment. It’s another vote of confidence in our business and the PBSA sector from our investors Brookfield and our lenders Investec.”

“York is a very strong market for us, Bristol has been a long-standing target market, so we’re pleased to acquire the sites, and we’re looking forward to working with Watkin Jones again.”

“We think the completed developments will work very well in these locations, particularly with the wide range of affordable accommodation options that we’ll be offering,” he says.

Student Roost currently manages 52 properties across the UK, with three others in development and set to open within the next two years.


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