Following the handover of 22 new homes at The Grange, the first phase of the partnership between the University of St Andrews and Kingdom Initiatives is complete. The project is one small part of the University’s strategy to combat the current housing shortage in St Andrews.
Located about 10 minutes from the town centre at East Grange, the development will eventually contain 61 flats and houses for postgraduate students, staff, and their families. 14 of the properties are to be shared housing. The homes are designed to be environmentally sound. All are to be fitted with hydrogen-ready boilers and solar panels.
The project is to be completed in phases with the next phase scheduled for completion in winter of this year. The final phase is scheduled for completion in the spring of 2024.
A spokesperson for the University said, “As we had promised, the University took a number of measures to ease pressure of accommodation this year, including cutting our intake of new students and increasing the availability of accommodation across the estate, as well as working with the local authority to secure more accommodation in the private sector in St Andrews and the surrounding area.”
While these new homes are exclusively for post-graduate students and staff, the University is working on improving the number of accommodation options available to its undergraduate students.
A University spokesperson said, “In the longer term, plans for a 703-student bed purpose-built development at Albany Park near the East Sands are with Fife Council’s planning department awaiting a decision. Progress with this development was delayed due to the pandemic and issues in the global supply chain.”
In May of 2023, the University announced that it would re-submit plans for the residence at Albany park which closed in 2018. Plans for 821 new rooms were submitted in 2019 and eventually 681 beds were approved in 2021. The re-submitted plans aim to provide over 700 beds.
At the time, Derek Watson, Chief Operating Office, Quaestor, and Factor at the University said that the development at Albany Park “is key to the University’s strategy to provide more accommodation for our students and ease the pressure on housing stock in St Andrews. Despite recent volatility in the markets, particularly the construction industry, we have remained committed and optimistic this plan can become a reality.”
“If approved, the new Albany Park will provide more than 700 high-quality student beds in an attractive landscaped environment which will improve amenity in the east of the town."
Photo: Peter Gordon