Table of Contents

Balfour and Unite sign uni halls deals worth combined £400m

Unite College students and Balfour Beatty have signed separate offers to develop college pupil halls with a mixed price of greater than £400m.

Balfour Beatty is about to construct 1,899 bedrooms with the College of Sussex in a £200m deal, whereas student-accommodation big Unite introduced a separate, £250m three way partnership (JV) with Newcastle College for round 2,000 new beds.

Scholar lodging has boomed as an trade in recent times, with exercise throughout the sector increasing nearly six-fold in the three months to December to whole £1.61bn.

Balfour Beatty’s settlement with the College of Sussex is made up of a £32m fairness funding by the contractor, which is 81 per cent of the mission fairness. The college will cowl the remainder of the fairness, whereas Balfour Beatty is elevating £171m of wrapped bond financing to the mission by non-public placement.

Balfour Beatty’s enterprise may also see the event of a brand new well being and wellbeing centre on the West Slope Residences web site, in addition to new catering and retail amenities.

The contractor has dedicated to utilizing modular building methods all through the method, which it mentioned will “considerably scale back carbon emissions” by reducing the variety of lorry journeys to and from the positioning.

Its public-private partnership arm, Balfour Beatty Investments, signed a 54-year-long contract with the college that can see it finance and keep the positioning after completion. Work has already begun, with Balfour Beatty anticipating the positioning to be prepared for the beginning of the 2026/27 educational yr.

Round 450 folks, together with 150 apprentices and graduates, shall be employed on the scheme.

Unite’s mission with Newcastle College will, in the meantime, see the developer substitute the prevailing Fortress Leazes web site with a 2,000-bed block. The location at the moment has 1,250 pupil beds, however will shut for demolition this summer time.

Unite is offering £128m of the event prices with a 51 per cent possession share, with the remainder of the funds coming from debt secured in opposition to the JV. As a part of the college’s 49 per cent stake it would present the positioning – which it owns – on a 150-year lease to the brand new JV.

The scholar-housing firm expects to submit a planning utility by the top of the primary quarter this yr, which might see building work begin in early 2025.

Unite College students chief government Joe Lister mentioned: “The partnership will present additional help to Newcastle College in assembly their lodging wants at a time of an actual housing scarcity, in order that they’ll give attention to offering a world-class expertise for his or her college students.”