Planning application for Howard Gardens in Cardiff to be decided by City of Cardiff Council on 15 March 2018

5874 Howard Gardens Image 0 - Aerial view

Planning application for new high-quality, purpose-built student accommodation development on northern end of Howard Gardens in Cardiff to be decided by City of Cardiff Council on 15 March 2018 City of Cardiff Council will be discussing the planning application for Crosslane Student Developments’ new, high-quality, purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) scheme at the northern end of Howard Gardens in Cardiff at its upcoming planning committee meeting on 15 March 2018. Subject to conditions, the scheme has been recommended for approval by planning officers.

The site, which occupies half of the square on the northern end of Howard Gardens, was formerly occupied by a bowling green and club pavilion that has been in a state of disrepair and not been in public use for a number of years. City of Cardiff Council made the decision to sell this end of the square, not designated as public ‘open space’, just over two years ago. Crosslane successfully achieved preferred bidder status as developer for the site, and the Council will be reviewing and agreeing the proposed plans before the sale of the site is completed.

The redevelopment will enhance the area and complement the Council’s wider improvement plans, which include restoring and enhancing the Howard Gardens park on the southern end of the square, which has also been out of public use for some time due to the dilapidated state of the facilities. The Flying Start play hut, located in the middle of the Howard Gardens square, is due to be relocated by the Council to alternative premises, ensuring that members of the public can continue to use it while at the same time freeing up additional space within the public park. Crosslane’s plans for the proposed development include an improved open green space for local residents with a public coffee shop on the ground floor of the building.

The city’s student population is already over 50,000 having continued to increase ahead of the national average for several years, with particular growth from international students. As a result, the city has a significant shortfall of suitable accommodation for students which is failing to keep up with demand. The further supply of new high-quality, purpose-built student accommodation helps to meet this growing demand and also frees up private housing in Cardiff for families and young professionals.

The proposed plans will deliver a high-quality student accommodation building, constructed to the highest standards and BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) certified. The building will provide accommodation for 384 students with a range of highquality communal facilities, including a common room, study hub and gym. While much of the more recent student accommodation developments in the city have been self-contained studios, Crosslane’s proposals are focused on shared cluster flats of between four and eight bedrooms, sharing a kitchen and living room. This design helps students make the most of their educational and social experiences, as well as providing rooms at more affordable prices. Prime Student Living, the student accommodation lettings and operational management arm of the Crosslane Property Group, will be responsible for marketing, lettings, management and achieving full occupancy prior to completion.

The Howard Gardens area of Adamsdown is ideally located for students, due to its close proximity to city centre amenities, as well as to a number of key University campus sites, such as the Cardiff University Engineering Block and the University of South Wales. The proposed development is within easy walking distance of most of the university buildings within the city, encouraging students living there to walk, cycle or use public transport and a large indoor secure bicycle storage facility will be provided, helping to discourage car ownership and prevent additional traffic and parking congestion.

Lisa Timberlake, Development Manager at Crosslane Student Developments, said: “The City of Cardiff Council decided over two years ago to sell the bowling green and club house at Howard Gardens, which does not include the area designated as public open space, to help fund proposed restoration and improvement works in the area. Crosslane successfully achieved preferred bidder status and the Council will be reviewing and agreeing our proposed plans before the acquisition of the site occurs.

We have made extensive amendments to the proposed scheme in response to consultation feedback since submitting the planning application, including enhancing the slimline design of the tower. The revised submission also increases the size of some of the bedrooms, reducing the total number within the scheme overall, details the landscaping design and increases the size of the public access walkway on Newport Road.

Through combined private and public investment and cooperation it is expected that the proposed works will deliver a wealth of new public facilities and support local trading which will benefit the local community.

Crosslane is committed to continuous regular and transparent engagement with local community representatives to ensure the long-term success and integration of this project into the neighbourhood as well as effective on-going management of the property and pastoral care for our students.

Crosslane also looks forward to working with local businesses to encourage students to shop and eat out locally within Adamsdown. All of this work will be supported by our student operations and management business, Prime Student Living, which is part of Crosslane, helping us to ensure the development’s long-term success.”