Large new student accommodation in Coventry to be built as warnings rejected

A Coventry student block can be built after the council agreed to grant a new lease for the land. But a request from the public for councilors to examine the approach in more detail and possibly reject it was rejected.

Land at Westwood Business Park can be used for student housing as part of a “re-fencing” of the lease, a councilor agreed yesterday (May 13). This means the offices can be demolished and replaced with the 544-bed student building.

But more than a dozen residents called on the council to allow the decision to be “appealed” by control councillors. This would have allowed members to review it and possibly recommend a rethink.


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Scrutiny chairman Labor councilor Naeem Akhtar was at the meeting, which was held to agree the decision was so urgent it did not need to be “called”. The meeting papers said this was to avoid a delay that would push back the opening of the student block by a year, meaning the “enhanced income” for the council would have been delayed.

Progress House in Westwood Business Park (Image: GDL Architects/Design & Access Statement)

But a petition signed by 17 local residents contested whether the decision was “urgent” in the sense that it would seriously harm the council and the public interest. They rejected claims about the scheme in the report, pointing out that student blocks in the city center are being re-used due to a lack of occupiers.