A major landmark building in the centre of Coventry is to be transformed into a hub for university staff, parents and students as the result of a major new property deal.
Coventry University has agreed a lease on all 64 apartments in the first phase of Belgrade Plaza in the city centre.
Coventry University Enterprises has taken a 12-year-lease on the one and two-bedroom homes through its FutureLets accommodation division. The deal has been agreed with landlord Clearbell Capital, through commercial property agents Bromwich Hardy.
The apartments will be now offered as serviced accommodation to staff, travelling lecturers and parents of students, who are visiting the city and University.
The apartments occupy the top floors of the mixed-use development at Belgrade Plaza which includes a hotel, gym and three restaurants all in close proximity to the city’s Belgrade Theatre.
Obi Okwuadigbo, of FutureLets, reported that growth of the University meant there is an increasing need for accommodation for staff as well as students.
He said: “The need for more student accommodation is well documented and people can see the new schemes being developed in the city centre.
“We also need to ensure there is enough accommodation for staff and visitors and that’s the reason behind our decision to lease Belgrade Plaza.
“The lease has been taken over 12 years and began at the end of August this year in time for the academic year ahead.”
James Brookes, of Bromwich Hardy – who acted for Clearbell, said: “Having worked very hard on the student sector in Coventry over the past few years it is great to see a number of major deals coming to fruition.
“The lease makes perfect sense from the landlord, as it provides a lengthy term at a strong rental, with Coventry University’s covenant strengthening the investment value at Belgrade Plaza.
“For the university, they get to house their lecturers and parents at one of the premier locations in the city centre.”
Dominic Moore, Head of Asset Management at Clearbell Capital, said: “Coventry is a city undergoing great change. It has always had significant economic drivers, including strong local industry and the two universities. Yet, to date, Coventry has lacked sufficient residential accommodation and facilities to match growing demand to live and work in the city.
“As the home of both Coventry and Warwick Universities, there is a particularly strong need for accommodation for students and staff in Coventry. This long-term letting at Belgrade Plaza demonstrates the desire for universities such as Coventry to ensure supply of high-quality student and staff accommodation.”