‘Disappointment’ over city funding as 580 student flats approved

Student housing on Norton Way, Radford (Credit: Hyson Green Developments Limited)
By Jamie Waller, Local Democracy Reporter

Two blocks of student housing have been given the go-ahead, but the developer will pay only a quarter of the sum to improve the city that was originally asked for.

The 587 apartments on Norton Way, Radford, will be built on the site of the former John Player factory.

Nottingham City Council originally asked for more than £2m to be contributed to local improvements such as roads and affordable housing.

However, the developer has argued the figure down to £442,000.

The council’s planning committee said it was disappointed by the final amounts, which are known as Section 106 payments.

The developer,  Hyson Green Developments Limited, claimed it would be financially unviable to pay the full £2m that was asked for.

An independent assessment recommended £850,000, but this was revised down to £442,000 after the applicant provided further information.

Councillor Sam Harris (Lab) said: “It surprises me that we ended up at less than twenty-five per cent of the original amount after the back and forth.

“I’m also concerned that the applicant’s starting point for negotiations was zero.”

Councillor Kirsty L Jones (Lab) agreed, saying: “The Section 106 level is a disappointment. We lose out on a lot of things while developers still get to make their profit.”

The two blocks would have a total of 116 apartments between them, with 405 and 182 beds respectively.

They are located next to several other student flats, which will share a new green landscaped area that will be created.

A report into the application states it is located on top of historic tunnels and air raid shelters.

Cllr Jones added: “It’s important to protect those. They are part of our heritage and history in Nottingham, and we don’t want them to be lost.”

The committee was told that the applicant would be required to carry out a thorough investigation before any work began.

The scheme was unanimously approved during Wednesday’s meeting (June 19), despite the concerns over funding levels.

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