Planning permission sought for 240 bed Westside student accommodation

Galway Daily news Plans approved for 240 bed student accommodation development

Planning permission is being sought for a 240 bed student accommodation development in the westside of Galway City.

Westside Shopping Centre Limited has submitted plans to An Bord Pleanála for a six to part-seven storey block of student accommodation on the Seamus Quirke Road.

The 0.54ha site of the project is located at the south-western corner of the shopping centre car park, which would also be realigned as part of this project.

The complex will also include a café/takeaway at the ground floor level, as well as a plaza area on the east of the site.

The main part of the roof area will also form communal open spaces for the students.

The development will result in the loss of 94 parking spaces from the car park, with 238 remaining afterwards.

In 2019, An Bord Pleanála granted another third party planning permission for the construction of a café that would result in the loss of 27 parking spaces from the same car park.

However, according to this application, that land has since been purchased by Westside Shopping Centre Limited, and if this application is approved, that project will not go ahead.

The student beds will be grouped into 32 clusters of four to eight beds, with each cluster having its own kitchen, and living/dining spaces.

The planning report submitted by the developer says that the complex will provide a “significant architectural uplift” to the area, with a contemporary building that will “juxtapose” with the surrounding context.

The application also states that there is significant pressure on student accommodation in Galway, and that the subject site is well positioned due to its proximity to NUIG.

The government’s National Student Accommodation Strategy (2017) states that 6,652 purpose built bed spaces will be needed for students in Galway alone by 2024, it also states.

The planning application has been submitted directly to An Bord Pleanála as a Strategic Housing Development, after first going through the consultation process for the SHD last year.

An Bord Pleanála is due to make a decision on this planning application by August 2 of this year.