The city of Cambridge is recognised across the country and around the world for its historic architecture. From the spectacular King’s College Chapel to The Bridge of Sighs, the city is proud of its history and has deliberately avoided following in the footsteps of high rise cities such as London, Birmingham and Manchester.
Whilst a desire to protect the city’s skyline is admirable, it does throw up a number of problems. Research published at the beginning of 2015 found that between 2004 and 2013:
- Only 4,710 new homes were built in the city.
- The population of Cambridge grew by almost 15,000 people (12.7%), making it the fifth fastest growing city in the UK.
- The number of private sector jobs in the city increased by more than 5,600 (12.6%) – the fourth highest increase in the UK.
- The average price of a house in the city increased by 14.3% – the biggest increase of any city in the UK.
- Throw into the mix that it is estimated the student population will increase by 5,000 over the next 25 years, with staffing numbers also expected to increase by approximately 3,000 and the current lack of affordable housing in the city is likely to become a significant problem.
To tackle the problem, local authorities granted planning consent in February 2013 for the North West Cambridge Development. The 150-hectare site is being funded by Cambridge University and will see the creation of a mixed-use development featuring among other things:
- 1,500 new homes for University and College staff
- 1,500 private homes for sale
- Accommodation for 2,000 postgraduates
- 100,000sqm of academic, research and development facilities
- Community facilities, including a primary school, community centre, health centre, supermarket and local shops
There will be phased completions from 2015-2017. Part of the development has seen Graham Construction awarded the contract to develop a 325 room accommodation block for post-graduate students. Graham Construction is a contractor we have worked with previously, with one of the most recent projects being the decoration of 52 new flats and 3 townhouses in London.
We are therefore delighted to have been awarded the work to undertake all decorating for the new accommodation block. Work is due to commence in November of this year and we look forward to bringing you photos of the completed work in due course.
In the meantime, if you can find out more about the North West Cambridge Development you can do so by visiting www.nwcambridge.co.uk.