Agenda item - Student Housing Strategy - evidence and options

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Agenda item

Student Housing Strategy - evidence and options

Report of Executive Director Neighbourhoods, Communities & Housing (copy attached).

 

Decision:

That Housing & New Homes Committee:

 

(1)      Note the evidence, options and consultation process outlined in the report and within the scoping paper at Appendix 1.

 

(2)      Agrees to go out to consultation on a new Student Housing Strategy.

 

Minutes:

52.1   The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director, Neighbourhoods, Communities & Housing which explained that the Student Housing Strategy 2009 had now expired and there was now a gap in the City’s Housing Strategy which was agreed in 2015. A refresh of the strategy had been discussed at the City’s Strategic Housing Partnership and agreement was now sought to consult and deliver a new Student Housing Strategy. The strategy would be developed, building on the progress of the previous strategy, setting out priorities and goals that will support the changing needs and challenges faced by students living in the city. It will set a balance between meeting students’ needs and those faced by the rest of the City’s population. The report was presented by the Head of Housing Strategy, Property & Investment.

 52.2  Councillor Atkinson welcomed the initiative but stressed that 17,000 students still needed accommodation. He noted that there seemed to be no central helpline. In response it was explained that there was always a balance on how much accommodation for students should be available in the city. There were land supply issues.

52.3   Councillor Mears welcomed the report which was the first Housing Strategy report since 2009. She looked forward to its implementation in 2018.

52.4    Councillor Gibson stated that one of the concerns in his ward and in Lewes Road wards was that the council had got its approach to managing and limiting the concentration of HMOs and it appeared that head leased properties run by the students were essentially operating HMOs, avoiding these constraints.

 

52.5    Councillor Druitt referred to page 278, paragraph 7.4 (sustainability implications) and declared an interest. He stressed that the vast majority of students lived along the Lewes Road corridor. If the council were going to mitigate high concentrations of students then it needed to look at transportation. In response, it was explained that there had been a great deal of conversations about transport issues.

 

52.6    Councillor Hill stressed that the referendum factor would have a massive effect on the future of the universities in terms of how much they would expand. She stressed the importance of working in partnership with the universities. Purpose build student housing was very important and it was something that the universities needed. Land in the city was needed to accommodate that need. However head leasing was a major concern amongst residents in the Lewes Road area.  There was potential for some of the councils’ planning consents to be undermined. 

 

52.7   RESOLVED:-

That Housing & New Homes Committee:

 

(1)      Note the evidence, options and consultation process outlined in the report and within the scoping paper at Appendix 1.

 

(2)      Agrees to go out to consultation on a new Student Housing Strategy.

 

Supporting documents:

 


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