Stratford set for a 943-bed student tower

Plans have been submitted to the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) for a student residential tower on a well-connected brownfield site.

The applicant which seeks detailed planning consent proposes a 41-floor tower on a 0.21 hectare (ha) site and approximately 50 m to the northeast of Stratford Station.

Up to 985 purpose-built student accommodation units could be provided, alongside commercial floorspace and workspace and around 700 square meters of public realm improvements.

If approved the scheme would take just three years to construct and would be open for occupation in time for the beginning of the 2025/26 academic term.

The proposed design would also seek to upgrade the current emergency escape route from Stratford Station and facilities a new station entrance and exit in the future.

The proposed scheme as viewed from the Stratford City Link Bridge, image credit BDP.

Within a 2.5-mile radius of the proposed site, there is a current ratio of full-time students per bed space of 3.3 (counting students studying in higher education providers within a 2.5-mile radius).

Approximately 70% of full-time students are required to find accommodation within privately rented HMOs or by living with parents/other family members and would otherwise be unable to access university or private sector purpose-built accommodation.

The development pipeline of student accommodation over the same period will not meet this increase in demand (assuming all 3,954-bed spaces are built).
East Bank in Stratford is currently under construction and by 2022 will be home to two new campuses: UCL East and London College of Fashion.

There are approximately 21,594 full-time students studying at higher education providers within a 2.5-mile radius of the Meridian Steps site.

Building crown and residents rooftop amenity space, image credit BDP.

The supply of bed spaces under construction, across London, looks set to meet the strategic requirement of 3,500-bed spaces as outlined in the
London Plan over the next two years, however, from 2022/23 it appears the new delivery will fall short of this.

Further phases of development to UCL’s East Campus are likely to bring an additional 20,000 students to the LLDC area meaning that the total, fully operational, student population across all campuses within the LLDC is likely to be 30,000 in the next ten years

Project Team

Applicant: Unite Students

EIA Consultant: Temple

Architect and Landscape Architect: BDP

Town Planning Consultant: ROK Planning

Townscape and Visual Consultant: The Townscape Consultancy

Socio-economics and Health Consultant: Quod

Noise and Vibration Consultation: Cahill Design Consultants (CDC)

Air Quality Consultant: Arup

Transport Consultant: Arup

Wind Microclimate Consultant: GIA

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