UPP to deliver University of Hull £130m student accommodation scheme

University Partnerships Programme (UPP), a leading provider of on-campus infrastructure and support services in the UK, has been appointed as preferred bidder to deliver a new £130m student accommodation scheme for the University of Hull. 

The 43-year partnership between the university and UPP will provide a further 1,450 students with a room, helping to meet the growing demand for high quality, on-campus accommodation. The scheme will comprise a mixture of new build and estate transfer and UPP will raise the required investment and handle the design, construction and operation of the scheme. The construction value of the project is more than £80m.

This latest partnership boosts UPP’s portfolio to around 31,500 rooms through long-term partnerships with 15 leading universities across the UK. Once the transaction is complete, UPP will have invested approximately £2.2bn in universities across the UK since 1998, demonstrating the appetite amongst long term institutional investors for the higher education sector. 

Glenn Burgess, acting vice-chancellor at the University of Hull, said: “This is the latest announcement in a wave of investment across the campus to provide an exceptional environment for staff and students. Students increasingly want premium, high-quality accommodation. This development ensures that we are able to meet those needs, as well as increase the number of students who can live on campus, in high-quality, managed and secure accommodation.”

Stephen Willis, chief finance officer at the University of Hull, said: “The bold transformation well under-way on campus is a critical element in ensuring an outstanding student experience and a huge statement of confidence in the future of both the University and the city of Hull. We’re proud to be investing so significantly in making Hull a highly desirable place to live, work, study, visit and invest.”

Sean O’Shea, group chief executive of UPP, said: “Our partnership will enable more students to live on campus at the heart of this fantastic institution. This scheme responds to the growing demand from students for high quality, on-campus accommodation, as well as the University of Hull’s commitment to offering the best student experiences. UPP’s research into the experiences of students shows satisfaction with the non-academic side of university is higher among first-year students who live in purpose built student accommodation. 

“Our business model recognises not only the inherent value of higher education to students, but also the contribution universities can make to the UK economy and society. We are committed to driving investment into the UK’s higher education sector and plan to invest a further £1bn into universities over the next two years that will help deliver world class infrastructure and continue attracting the brightest and best students from across the world.”

The proposed scheme has been designed to respect and reflect the traditional architecture of its location and aims to create an active community hub for the University of Hull’s students. The development will be on the west side of the campus, close to the new £28m health campus, currently under construction. Nine accommodation blocks will form around a central plaza at the top of a ‘street’, which will offer facilities such as a newsagents and a central recreation area with a café. 

 The £130m investment is in addition to the University of Hull’s £200m strategy which is aimed at providing “outstanding” experience for its students, which includes new and refurbished buildings, IT structure and student services. 

Subject to gaining planning permission, construction is targeted to begin in May 2017 with work due to be completed by the end of 2019.

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