Plans for new student accommodation refused

The current Albany Park student accommodation.
The current Albany Park student accommodation.

Plans to redevelop a student accommodation site near East Sands have been rejected.

The University of St Andrews had submitted plans to build new student accommodation, a facilities building and seasonal cafe at Albany Gate, which would have doubled the amount of bedrooms.

But Fife Council has refused the plans, citing a lack of sufficient information that the proposals meet planning policies.

Concerns had also been raised about the site by the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA), which objected to the plan on the grounds that ‘it may place buildings and persons at flood risk contrary to Scottish planning policy’. St Andrews Community Council and the St Andrews Preservation Trust also objected to the plan.

A university spokesperson said: “SEPA objected on the grounds of flood risk to a section of the site. We’re revising our proposals and will be re-submitting an application later this year to take account of those concerns.”

The university had wanted to build accommodation with 754 bedrooms on the site. It would have also included a student facilities building with a dining hall, kitchen facilities, private dining room, cinema room and staff room.

It argues that the current halls of residence, which was opened in the 1970s, is ‘unattractive’ and ‘uninspiring’.

The application stated the development would support the move to reduce HMOs in the town.