£48m Belfast student accommodation scheme 'tops out' at 12 storeys

The 774 units at the Nelson Street student accommodation scheme are expected to be in use for the 2024/25 academic year.
The 774 units at the Nelson Street student accommodation scheme are expected to be in use for the 2024/25 academic year.

ONE of the biggest ever student accommodation schemes built in Belfast has reached the ‘topping out’ phase.

The 774-unit development on Nelson Street, close to the new Ulster University campus, is being built by Co Down construction firm Graham.

The Hillsborough headquartered group has now completed the concrete framework and steel structure of the 12 storey block, which overlooks the M3 and Westlink.

The £48 million scheme is being financed by Holywood-based Lacuna Developments and South Carolina-based Greystar.

The accommodation will be managed by Student Roost, which was bought last year by Greystar and Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC, in a £3.3 billion deal.

Student Roost also manage student schemes on Belfast’s Little Patrick Street and Great Patrick Street, as well as John Bell House on College Square East and Swanston House on Queen Street.

The new Nelson Street scheme, due to be completed in the summer of 2024, will be its biggest in Belfast to date.

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Graham said construction works are on schedule, with work on the window fit out, brickworks, courtyard works, and roof now under way.

Managing director of Lacuna Developments, Anthony Best, said the company has been involved in developing around 2,700 student units in Belfast since 2015.

“It is fantastic to see the positive ripple effect all the students are having on the city centre post the pandemic,” he said.

“We take a lot of pride in the high standard of accommodation we are delivering for Belfast with this scheme in particular having a large amount of recreational facilities and private amenity space which benefits the residents and wider Ulster University community both from a physical and mental health perspective.”

Plans for the Nelson Street development include a shared sports and games hall, wellness room, physiotherapy suite, social areas, a café and a gym.