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Friday, 16 April 2021

Accommodation plans for almost 400 students at new build in St Ann’s facing objections

Planning officers have recommended that the plans be approved. 

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Plans for a huge block of student accommodation are expected to be given the green light by planning bosses, but concerns have been raised.

The building, which will be up to seven storeys, will be built on the site of the former Gala Bingo Hall, in St Anns Well Road, if plans are approved.

Developers hope to build a vast block, with space for 396 students, spread across a range of two, three, four, five and six-bed cluster flats and studios.

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Developers acquired the site last year from bingo operators Buzz Group, and had originally planned to build space for 396 students, over nine storeys.

However, plans now submitted to Nottingham City Council, and due to be voted on next week, include a building ranging from two to seven storeys, and with space for 356 student flats.

Planning officers have recommended that the plans be approved.

However, the proposal is not without critics.

A council report on the development states: “A total of 356 student bedrooms would be provided within the development, comprising 54 studios and 121 cluster flats.

“There would be a principal entrance off St. Ann’s Well Road leading into a reception area and communal facilities.

“Further amenities including a laundry, gym, and cinema room are also located on the ground floor.

“There would be a secondary entrance off Curzon Place to the rear at first floor level, noting the difference in site levels between St. Ann’s Well Road and Curzon Place.

“A bin store is also to be accessed off Curzon Place.

“A total of four external courtyard spaces are provided through the configuration of the building, with cycle storage being accommodated within two of these courtyards and also accessed off St. Ann’s Well Road.”

All three Labour councillors who represent the area have expressed objections to the building and the nearby Islamic Centre has also formally expressed its opposition to the scheme.

The Nottingham Council of Mosques has also objected.

Labour Councillor Chatal Lee represents St Ann’s ward, and in formally objecting, said: “This mosque is a culturally important and significant building for people across Nottingham and beyond.

“The sacred use of this building must be respected and I don’t believe that these plans do that.

“Nottingham’s largest and most used mosque should not be overlooked by student flats, have its light reduced in the main prayer hall or be squashed in.

“It is wholly inappropriate and insensitive. I also think the size isn’t in keeping with the rest of the local area. “

The plan will be voted on at a virtual meeting of Nottingham City Council’s Planning Committee on Wednesday, January 20.