Controversial extension to student accommodation scheme gets go-ahead

How the extension will look
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Controversial plans to expand a student accommodation scheme in Nottingham’s Sneinton Market area have been given the go-ahead.

After a majority decision by Nottingham City Council’s planning committee, iQ Student Accommodation will to extend its iQ Exchange Nottingham scheme with the addition of 85 beds.

The work will also include additional student communal areas and a refurbishment of the retail space fronting Sneinton Market in a move that will increase The Oval – the newer part of the scheme – by two storeys.

Despite fears that the Sneinton Market area will be overrun by students should the extension be granted, only one councillor voted against the scheme.

iQ Student Accommodation says the plans will regenerate the existing street frontages to Gedling Street, Boston Street and Brook Street, “creating a more interactive street environment and greater safety and security through increased passive surveillance”.

However, a petition against the expansion of the building gained almost 5,200 signatories. The organisers of the petition said the scheme would mean that independent traders in Sneinton Market would face “an uncertain future” and dubbed the scheme “creative slaughter”.

iQ is one of the largest providers of student accommodation in the UK, owning and operating 28,000 bedrooms across some 67 sites in 27 cities. Some 83% of its portfolio is in ‘Russell Group’ university cities.