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Student accommodation on the agenda

plans will be discussed this week
plans will be discussed this week

Construction of new accommodation for hundreds of students could be given the green light this week.

Extensions to two halls-of-residence are proposed by the University of St Andrews as part of a £70 million investment to support growth of the student population from around 8,200 to 10,000 over the next decade.

It is proposed to build 184 new bedrooms at University Halls, in Kennedy Gardens, and 205 at Agnes Blackadder Hall, at North Haugh.

Fife Council planners have recommended the north east planning committee gives the go-ahead when it meets on Wednesday.

In its submission to the council, HLM Architects said: “Published in March 2016, the University of St Andrews outline accommodation action plan sanctioned significant investment in student housing and aims to provide additional bed spaces and refurbish large areas of the existing residences.”

It said the investment would improve the range and choice of accommodation available to students.

It added: “The university is also fulfilling a commitment to the town that wherever possible the university will provide modern, university-managed accommodation for students to lessen the pressures on the private housing market in the centre of St Andrews.”

University Hall is a cluster of buildings and the three and four-storey extension blocks would connect to Old Hall via a single storey glazed corridor.

Council chartered planner Nicolas Lopez said the extension would be a high quality, contemporary addition to the adjoining listed building.

Accommodating up to 550 students, Agnes Blackadder Hall is already one of the largest student residences in St Andrews, and the new four-storey extension would wrap in a U-shape around its north and east elevations.

The buildings would be linked by a single-storey building which would act as a single point of access and informal meeting point.

Both extensions would be made available for public use outside term time.

Further refurbishment and expansion is proposed at Andrew Melville Hall, at North Haugh, and Albany Park, at East Sands.

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