Acquisition of 33,396 sq ft development at St James’ House, Newcastle for a total development value of approximately £15.5 million
Crosslane Student Developments, part of the Crosslane Group, has successfully acquired a 1980’s office on St James’ Street, Newcastle to convert into purpose-built student accommodation, from Lambert Smith Hampton, for a total development value expected to be £15.5 million. Upon practical completion of the development, scheduled for September 2016, in time for the 2016/17 academic year, St. James’ House will be operated by Prime Student Living, the student accommodation operational management arm of Crosslane Group.
Crosslane has acquired the freehold to the site which is located in the North West of Newcastle City Centre, adjacent to St James’ Park and within a three minute walk to Newcastle University campus. The University of Northumbria main campus, St James’ Metro station and Haymarket and Monument metro stations are also all a short walk away.
Work on site commenced in January 2016 to develop the property into a modern, premium, 140 bed studio scheme with high quality communal facilities including common room, gym, private kitchen and dining room for group entertaining, study room and cinema room.
Newcastle is an exciting student city with two popular universities having a combined student population of 42,215 full time students, including 9,820 international students and 4,565 post-graduates. Newcastle University, a Russell Group university, is ranked 23rd in The Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2015 and Northumbria University is one of the largest universities in the UK and focused on research and business.
Crosslane has planning consent for the site and has appointed for the scheme Day Architectural Ltd and Torsion Group as the main architects and contractors respectively.
Commenting on the purchase, Andy Whatson, Director of Crosslane Student Developments, said:
“This is the third commitment by Crosslane in Newcastle following the opening of its 216 bed studio apartments within the St James Point I student accommodation development in 2014 and its 204 bed St James Point II extension completed in September 2015. Once the St James’ Street development completes in September 2016, this will bring Crosslane’s total number of beds in Newcastle to 559. Newcastle remains an attractive city for Crosslane as it is a Russell Group university city with one of the largest universities in the UK, and continues to have a shortage of purpose-built student accommodation.”
Neil Osbourne, Director, Lambert Smith Hampton, said:
“We had been marketing the lease at St James’ House, but with that coming to an end and permitted development rights being granted for a change of use to studio apartments we negotiated an acquisition and surrender of the lease. The property is very well located for the student market being within a short distance of Newcastle University and in a central city location popular with students.
We have worked with Crosslane Student Developments on several schemes in the city – both in respect of sales and acquisitions and have also obtained consent for the development of a further 20 studios for the purchaser.”
Dan Spencer, Director, Torsion Group, said:
“Following on from our successful work with Crosslane for the Athena Studios student accommodation development in Birmingham, which opened in September last year, we are delighted to have been appointed as the main contractor on this new scheme. We look forward to continuing our partnership with Crosslane in the exciting city of Newcastle.”