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Greens call for urgent review of student accommodation

Sheffield Green councillors have put a motion to council calling for an urgent review of supply and demand of student accommodation.

The call comes in the wake of several recent planning applications for hundreds of student flats in purpose-built accommodation.

Douglas Johnson, Green Councillor for City ward, said,

“Students are incredibly important for our city and equally so are mixed communities.  Ideally, more students would live in amongst the community and not just in student-only accommodation.

“The council hasn’t reviewed its student accommodation strategy since 2013 and, even then, there were concerns about the over-supply of single-room, purpose built student accommodation.

“Changes in student populations can happen quickly but big building projects could blight our city centre in a few years if they turn out to be the wrong type of housing. There is already a shortage of family housing in the city centre.

“It isn’t just an issue for the “market”.  It is vital that the city centre is a high quality place to live and work for everyone.

“We need a review to say whether the right type of housing is still being built.”


  1. The motion has been submitted for the council meeting on 6th September 2017.
  2. The Council’s policy on Creating Mixed Communities is at
  3. Sheffield Green Party’s motion is:
    Motion – review of student accommodation
    Proposed by Cllr Douglas Johnson; seconded by Cllr Rob Murphy
    That this council,
    1.    Notes the report to Cabinet on 18 December 2013 on the Student Accommodation Strategy that warned of the risk that the provision of more purpose-built student accommodation will lead to over supply and older blocks falling empty.
    2.    Notes that the Council’s planning policy CS41 on “Creating mixed communities” requires a mix of tenures and sizes in large blocks of student accommodation and seeks to avoid over-saturation of student accommodation
    3.    However, notes that many recent planning applications for very large blocks of student accommodation have been passed even where not complaint with policy CS41;
    4.    Therefore calls on the Administration to carry out an urgent re-assessment of the supply of and demand for student accommodation.

Topics: City Wide, Council, Douglas Johnson, Featured, Housing