A flagship £28 million student accommodation development off Tritton Road roundabout in Lincoln has been officially opened ready for the start of the new university year.
The Gateway project has created up to 12 new jobs, accommodation for 519 students, as well as a new ground floor coffee shop and offices.
The Jackson and Jackson Developments project was opened by Mayor of Lincoln Councillor Andrew Kerry on Wednesday, September 2.
The ceremony fell one year after the construction contract was signed on site by Kier Group.
Completed in time for the arrival of the next University of Lincoln cohort this month, the building contains 519 bed spaces.
The eight-storey development was designed by Lincoln-based Stem Architects and is a mixture of studio apartments and cluster flats.
Completed to a high specification, the building comes with solar power, a new impressive laundry suite and high-speed internet.
Final preparations are underway as the first student moves in on September 7.
Dominik Jackson of Jackson and Jackson Developments said: “It’s been great to work with Kier because their work force is mostly local labourers, which was really important.
“At the project’s peak we had around 270 bodies on the site. There are about 990 tonnes of steel, 520 bathrooms, 386 kitchens and 68 kilowatts of solar power.
“I think it’s unlikely we would have seen as much growth and infrastructure as we have in the last few years if it wasn’t for the university and its students.
“There have been some problems in residential areas of the city with the growing student population so we hope buildings like this will help draw the students out and free up availability of family homes.”
Co-founder of the company Cameron Jackson added: “We are actually switching now from developer mode to management mode. It’s a partnership between us and the university.
“We have employed eight to 12 new members of staff on our side. It’s a 24-hour building so we will have staff on site at all times.
“To rent it costs £128 a week for a studio, £108 a week for an ensuite cluster bedroom and if you compare that with tired accommodation blocks in the city it’s quite competitive.
“The ground floor units are all fully let. One is currently being turned into a coffee shop. It’s the first shop a company with plans to expand as a chain. It’s locally based guys who were also behind the Cornish Pasty Co.
“The university management office will be in another unit and Unity Lettings, which we are partners in will also be there.”
Mayor of Lincoln Councillor Andrew Kerry said: “As someone who lived in Lincoln before the university I can see how the city has progressed and the way it has affected the regeneration of the corridor.
“The university has kick-started a new direction for the city.”