Huge row over student flats in Coventry as some say there are too many

Offices will be demolished and student accommodation will rise in their place following a controversial planning decision by Coventry City Council – but Coventry Live readers are divided over the decision in our comments section. Land at Westwood Business Park may be used for student housing as part of a lease “re-gearing” and a new 544-bed building is expected for the site.

A local protest aimed at “appealing” the decision was rejected on the grounds that it would delay construction by a year and deny the council “enhanced income” in the meantime. Conservative councilor Marcus Lapsa sponsored a petition against the emergency approval and said if it was appealed, “Whatever that decision is, the local community can be assured that the correct control steps have worked.”

A recent report has suggested that there is currently too much student accommodation in Coventry. One building has applied to be able to rent to students after the 322-bed scheme was only two-thirds full in the last academic year.

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Commentary Manfredcov supports new schemes: “The presence of students in the city is of great financial importance, as it contributes substantially to the local economy. It’s Coventry, not Manhattan, lucky we have universities.”

Reader Nico8 disagrees: “Coventry’s population is skyrocketing because of these ‘students’ may bring some economic benefits, but the downsides outweigh the upsides.”

Covid53 says: “Student housing near university frees up general housing bought as HMOs. Best build for students and ban HMOs in the area. Students bring in a lot of disposable income, supporting many shops and businesses. NIMBYs need to remember their universities. it’s business.”

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