Over 700 rooms for students to be built on Magistrates' Court site
CGI aerial view of the building. Picture: Rogers Stirk Harbour & Partners
A massive student halls with over 700 student rooms will be built on the site of a former Magistrates’ Court in Hammersmith.
Developer Dominvs Group has been given permission to construct the residential complex at 181 Talgarth Road.
The halls will be built next door to a 400-bed Premier Inn, which is currently under construction. Imperial College London is keen to take most of the student rooms and 359 will be available at rents capped by the Mayor of London.
A gym, study and seminar space will be built inside the 21,400sqm block, and it will also feature storage for 553 bikes, an outdoor courtyard, and garden with space to host events. The site is close to The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art and West London College and could potentially be used by students at Imperial College’s and Royal College of Art’s White City campuses.
Six people wrote to Hammersmith and Fulham Council objecting to the development. Some neighbours felt the building was poorly designed and would affect their privacy by overlooking. Others said the building does not match the rest of the local area and would impact the amount of natural light available.
A report by the council’s planning team said, “The impact of the proposed development upon adjoining occupiers is considered acceptable. There would be no significant worsening of noise/disturbance and overlooking, no unacceptable loss of sunlight or daylight or outlook to cause undue detriment to the amenities of neighbours. In this regard, the development would respect the principles of good neighbourliness.”
CGI view of the buildings from the centre of the development. Picture: Rogers Stirk Harbour & Partners
Dominvs was previously given permission to build two hotels on the site in 2020 but decided to build a block of halls instead after financial concerns. A planning report says, “The changing picture in the hotel development funding market for franchise hotels has necessitated Dominvs explore other options.”
It adds, “Dominvs has carried out a wide-ranging review of different land uses, including office and healthcare use for example, and this revealed that purpose-built student accommodation is both an appropriate and the most deliverable use on this site, with both operator and higher education institution interest (including from Imperial College London) in bringing development forward.”
Principal at Dominvs Group Jay Ahluwalia said, “The mixed-use nature of our proposal speaks to our ability to continually create value across different asset classes in response to the needs of the local area and market conditions. Earning the support of the community was a priority for us in this new scheme and we are proud to have seen local groups speaking in favour of our application yesterday.”
Imperial’s director of financial strategy John Anderson said, “Opportunities like this will increase the capacity to ensure that talent can emerge from any background and not just the most privileged. 181 Talgarth Road is a short walk from our clinical teaching site at Charing Cross Hospital and a short cycle ride from Hammersmith Hospital.
“Half the student rooms at 181 Talgarth Road will be affordable student rooms delivered to a high specification. We have been working with Dominvs for these to be allocated to Imperial students. We look forward to continuing to work together with Dominvs.”
Hammersmith and Fulham Council’s planning committee approved the development on Tuesday 8 March.
Hannah Neary - Local Democracy Reporter
March 21, 2022