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Keele University £160m expansion wins approval

Councillors have given the green light to a £160m expansion of Keele University.

Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council this week gave the Staffordshire university planning approval to develop student accommodation, social hubs and ancillary buildings on its campus.

The deal will see an additional 1,473 bed spaces created at the university, bringing its total number of student places above 4,000.

The project is backed by student accommodation investor UPP, which will manage the design, construction and operation of the new halls, although a contractor has yet to be appointed.

A UPP spokesperson said: “Negotiations with contractors are ongoing and more information will be shared when a decision has been made.”

Work is due to start on site later this year and will be delivered in phases to minimise distruption on campus.

Indigo Planning is acting as planning adviser on the scheme.

The project will include new-build expansions to existing student accommodation at the university’s Lindsay, Horwood and Barnes halls. Social facilities will be enhanced at the Holly Cross and The Oaks halls.

Indigo Planning regional director Nick Fillingham said: “Following a comprehensive and successful public consultation, this scheme is considered a welcome addition to the university by staff, students and local residents alike and will be a real asset to the university’s vision for the future.”

Last summer, Seddon was appointed to build an expansion to the Barnes hall as part of a £23m joint venture with the university. 

Seddon is building 453 en-suite bedrooms across two new blocks under that project, which is due to complete ready for the 2017/18 academic year.

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