Cardiff’s new stylish accommodation block remains ‘unfilled’

By Gabriella Mansell

Across the city there are several other major complexes under construction. However, ‘Eclipse’ is currently ‘unfilled’.

The new development, Eclipse is a student-specific accommodation site, which has been planned and approved at the Howard Gardens site in Adamsdown by the developers, Fusion Cardiff Metropolitan Ltd.

Cardiff Council planners granted planning permission for 686 student rooms within this development in March 2015. The complex will also include a sauna, gym, library, cinema room and is due to open this September.

Despite recent calls for an increase in student housing within the city due to the every-growing student population, planning consultants Alder King have issued their concerns for the project stating there is “uncertainty about student uptake in the first year operation.”

With the developments cheapest rooms costing 137 a week – for a 51-week lease in a six-bedroom flat with an en-suite bathroom and the most expensive room costing £287 for a double occupancy in a one bedroom room the rent prices of these developments could be considered expensive for Cardiff.

Cardiff University has said the average weekly rent in the city which inludes bills is £87.82.

The developers, Fusion Cardiff Metropolitian Ltd are therefore “left with a difficult decision”.

The current plan is for the development to continue but to open with a lower occupancy or alternatively find an alternate use for the property.

The company have been pressured to apply for permission in order to change the usage of the property, allowing individual non-student letting for periods of up to 90 days over the next year.

The developers have stated that they will endeavour to fill as many rooms as possible with students however, ‘subkect to demand and capacity’ they will use the empty rooms as professional serviced apartments.

The lacking uptake of rooms in these new, stylish student flats comes amidst concerns that Cardiff is becoming saturated with student accommodation blocks dominating the skyline.

Despite this, there is still an apparent shortage of student accommodation within then city of Cardiff. Since Cardiff is a city which services four universities the number of students searching for accommodation in the city will inevitably continue to increase over the next few years, putting pressure on both the four Universities and Cardiff Council to ensure they provide and offer appropriate accommodation.