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Fri March 22 2019

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Bouygues starts Brighton student halls

26 Feb Bouygues UK and its Uliving joint venture have started construction of five new student accommodation blocks as part of the transformation of the University of Brighton’s largest campus.

Moulsecoomb halls
Moulsecoomb halls

The five new towers at the University of Brighton’s Moulsecoomb campus, ranging in height from 8 to 18 floors, will provide more than 800 student bedrooms and space at ground level for new Students’ Union and fitness facilities. The development is being built on the site of the University’s Mithras House car park and is due to be ready for students starting courses from September 2021.

The campus transformation started last September when work got under way on a new multi-storey car park that will replace all existing surface parking at the campus. Construction of the new car park is scheduled for completion by the end of May this year.

Land freed up by the multi-storey car park is being used for the new student facilities and a new academic building that will provide a home for the university’s Business School. A new pedestrian bridge across the Lewes Road will link both sides of the campus, with improved walking routes through the campus, new green spaces and extensive landscaping.

University of Brighton vice-chancellor Debra Humphris said: “This is a huge milestone as work begins on the next stage of the university’s biggest ever capital development programme. The new student accommodation and other facilities that form part of the Big Build will transform our biggest campus. But just as importantly, along with the commercial development of the neighbouring Preston Barracks site they will also transform the whole local area for the benefit of all who live, work and study there."

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Uliving was named preferred bidder for the construction and management of the five towers a year ago. Uliving started life as Bouygues Development's student accommodation joint venture with Derwent, but Derwent is not involved in the Brighton project; Bouygues Development has rebranded as Linkcity; and Uliving Brighton is now owned by John Laing Investments.

Uliving is taking on the financing, development and management of the new student facilities with a 50-year operating term.

Despite no longer being the owner of the development vehicle, Bouygues UK is still the main contractor for the construction. Bouygues Energies & Services will be in charge of facilities management once built.

Uliving chief executive Axel Boutrolle said: “We are excited to be working with the University of Brighton to bring its ambitions to life. The Moulsecoomb Campus will boost the availability of modern, high-quality, purpose built student accommodation in this vibrant city, freeing up homes for local families”.

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