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Living Their Best Life: 5 Developments You Need To Know About If You're Interested In Student Accommodation

In the last couple of years student accommodation has really taken off in Ireland. What was once the preserve of a cohort of specialist providers and colleges themselves is now moving mainstream.

With the ongoing housing crisis, students are having difficulty finding accommodation through the traditional routes of on-site accommodation, digs or private student houses. Third-level colleges are increasingly demanding high-quality accommodation near their campuses to attract students.

"There is a capital return to be made on these developments," CBRE Development Land and Consultancy Associate Director Peter Garrigan said.

"Since 2015 we've seen a demand for these sites to accommodate student needs because we've had a large influx of students into the market that are not Irish, they're European, Asian and South American," he said.

Gone are the days of grotty student digs: here are five developments that are in the vanguard of change in the student accommodation market north and south of the Liffey.

1. Ballymun Student Accommodation


Supermarket giant Lidl is on the lookout for buyers for the two student accommodation blocks it plans to build alongside a new supermarket in North Dublin.

Lidl is seeking offers in the region of €46M for the scheme, which will see 346 student beds as well as offices, cafés and additional retail space.

The site is within one mile of Dublin City University, which recently amalgamated with St. Patrick's College Drumcondra and Mater Dei Institute.

2. Old Donnelly Centre Student Accommodation

Cairn Homes Cork Street Student Accommodation

It is not just proximity to a university that is taken into consideration when student accommodation is proposed.

"Demographic studies and identifying the best use of the land goes into it as well," Garrigan said.

Cairn Homes was recently granted permission to develop 399 student beds on the site of the old Donnelly centre in Dublin 8.

The mixed-use development will also consist of 12,270 SF of retail and café space.

3. Cairn Homes Stillorgan Student Accommodation

Cairn homes Stillorgan Student Accomodation

Cairn Homes will develop 576 student beds along with 103 apartments, co-working space, a community sports hall and café space in Stillorgan. Plans were approved this week by An Bord Pleanála.

The development had faced some opposition from local councillors saying large parts of the development will be vacant for chunks of the year, and the final decision is expected next month.

4.Trinity Halls expansion

Trinity Halls is already home to 178 apartments with 669 single bedrooms and 125 twin bedrooms.

Trinity College recently applied for 300 more beds in its student development in Darty in South Dublin. 

If approved, the tender will go out to developers with construction set to commence in 2019.

5. Prime Living Sandyford Student Accommodation

Prime Living Sandyford Student Accomodation

Last September, student accommodation developer Prime Living acquired a site in Sandymount with plans to deliver 700 student beds.

The site was sold with planning permission for 147 apartments, a gym, a café, a crèche and 151 parking spaces.

It is less than 2 miles from UCD and a five-minute walk from two Luas stations creating access to RCSI, DIT and Trinity College.