Contract exchanged on new student block

How Chaucer House in Isambard Brunel Road, Portsmouth, will look after it is renovated into student accommodation
How Chaucer House in Isambard Brunel Road, Portsmouth, will look after it is renovated into student accommodation

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A DEVELOPMENT that will house 480 students has been welcomed.

The Unite Group, a developer and manager of student accommodation, has exchanged contracts with Portsmouth City Council, to buy the Chaucer House site on Isambard Brunel Road.

If given planning permission, the £30m development will be finished in 2018.

Unite has a 15-year relationship with the University of Portsmouth.

Richard Simpson, managing director of property for Unite Students, said: ‘Unite has a strong understanding of the market in Portsmouth and a very positive working relationship with the city council which has been built over a number of years.

‘Students continue to be important contributors to the local economy and this new development will help to meet the high demand for student accommodation in the city.’

Leader of Portsmouth City Council Cllr Donna Jones welcomed the news.

She said: ‘Providing high-quality managed student accommodation in the city is key to assisting Portsmouth’s housing shortage.

‘The more student accommodation we have in the city, the more private family homes will come into the rental market easing overcrowding in the city.

‘Unite are a long term-established student accommodation provider and I welcome the development in the city.’

The news follows Empiric Student Property’s £21m plans to turn the disused 18-storey tower block Europa House, in Havant Street, Portsea into 242-bed student accommodation. This has permission and is expected to be finished in summer 2017.