Ambitious plan for ‘student village’ in Burnley

FUTURE: How the GUS building could look as part of the new Student Village for Burnley (S)
FUTURE: How the GUS building could look as part of the new Student Village for Burnley (S)

Talks to bring restaurants and shops to a new student village for Burnley are “on the cusp” according to the key developer.

The ambitious plans to transform the former GUS building at Kingsway House into a student village complex for the town’s burgeoning Higher Education population are well under way according to Alan Kinder, chairman of East Lancashire Regeneration.

He said: “We are in advanced negotiations with restaurants and retailers to occupy the ground floor of Kingsway House. A number of gyms have also expressed an interest in being based there.”

Mr Kinder also revealed that Fuel Cards Ltd, currently based on the lower ground floor, was close to agreeing an extension to its lease.

Planning permission was granted in November to transform the building in Kingsway, Bank Parade, into a 126 bedroom student accommodation with shops.

This marks the first phase in a multi-million pound project aimed at revitalising that area of Burnley while creating a dedicated hub for the growing number of Higher Education students coming to town to study at UcLan and UCFB University College of Football Business.

Two other applications relating to the site were also passed. The first centres on building a four-floor student accommodation block with 96 bedrooms, and the second for a four-storey extension to the existing building with room for a sports bars, student union and a further 32 bedrooms.

Mr Kinder added: “Initially we will concentrate on the existing building and we will then likely develop the new accommodation blocks in the coming years.”