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UCD is planning to spend €300 million building 3,000 more student residences

The university has just opened a new accommodation block housing 354 residences.

UCD Ashfield Campus Source: UCD

UNIVERSITY COLLEGE DUBLIN, the country’s largest university, is planning to build 3,000 new student residences at a cost of €300 million.

The news comes just as UCD opens its newest accommodation block, Ashfield, which houses an additional 354 student residences.

The opening of Ashfield brings the number of students in on-site accommodation to 3,164 at the Belfield campus.

The new accommodation will come as some respite for Belfield-bound students as the search for somewhere to live kicks into top gear ahead of another college year.

UCD is currently home to about 25,000 students.

The 3,000 new residences form part of the college’s campus development plan which is expected to cost in the region of €775 million, including the €300 million required for the 3,000 new residences.

When completed just under a quarter of the student population will be able to be housed on campus according to the college.

“As part of our overall university strategic plan, we want to develop world-class facilities to ensure we continue to attract the highest calibre of both students and staff,” university president Andrew Deeks said at the Ashfield opening.

Meanwhile, Housing Minister Simon Coveney, who attended the opening of Ashfield along with Education Minister Richard Bruton, said that future campus expansions such as the Ashfield complex at UCD will be fast-tracked to An Bord Pleanála as part of a sped-up planning process.

“This is a no-brainer as far as I am concerned,” Coveney said.

The Government’s action plan contains specific commitments that will be critical enablers of delivery of purpose-built accommodation, such as the additional 3,000 here at Belfield.

As part of the Government’s action plan for housing, 7,000 new student residences are expected to be in supply by 2019 according to Bruton.

The Higher Education Authority (HEA) currently estimates a shortfall of about 25,000 bed spaces for students across the country.

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