EDGE Hill’s application to build three accommodation blocks is to go before West Lancashire Borough Council planning committee tonight.
The blocks would be built on the eastern campus near the Creative Edge building and the existing Chancellors Court accommodation.
They will be a mixture of three and four storeys high and will be based around clusters, with each containing eight en-suite study bedrooms and a communal kitchen/ social space served from a central corridor and access doors.
The three blocks are intended to provide accommodation for a total of 245 students.
A number of bedrooms would also be designated for residential hall managers who provide support and supervision for students.
The West Lancashire Local Plan seeks to maximise the role of the university in terms of employment opportunities and benefits to the local economy and the principle of on-site development is considered acceptable.
Edge Hill is one of the fastest growing universities in the country and has struggled to meet demand for housing from first year students for a number of years – In 2012 alone 19% of students were unsuccessful in their accommodation applications.
In the highly competitive and volatile student recruitment market, being unable to meet demand from first year students puts the university at a distinct disadvantage and this application seeks to increase the supply.
However In the due to be published campus estates strategy the need for a minimum of 400 bed-places on campus to meet the shortfall is identified leading to the need for more building projects in the future.
The development is recommended for approval but a final decision will be made by councillors at the planning committee meeting tonight.