Proposed Student housing at Wellington Street
Proposed Student Flats at Wellington St

City Ward Green Party Councillor Ruth Mersereau has objected to proposals to build 963 student flats on land at Wellington Street in the city centre.

The planning application was submitted by developer Code Living and is part of a mixed-use development that includes a gym and a cinema.

Councillor Mersereau said,

“This is a large block of short-stay student accommodation, of which there is already an oversupply in the city. What we actually need is housing for people who want to live longer term in the city centre, and to build stronger longer-term neighbourhoods and communities.

The room sizes proposed by the developer are really poky. Living in spaces that are too small has a negative impact on people’s health and well-being. The proposed sizes for flats are very concerning. 16.3m2 for a corner studio flat is less than half the recommended size in the South Yorkshire Residential Design Guide, (which suggests 33m2 for a studio). The most common studio in the application is only 18.48m2, barely above half the recommended studio size, and even the accessible studios at 23.6m2 and 27.7m2, are all well below the recommended size. The 2 bedroom flat at 37.9m2 is also significantly below the 62 square metres recommended. It really looks like the developer is trying to cram as many units in as possible for financial reasons and to the detriment of the people who have to live there.

One thing that would really add to the quality of the development would be easy access to a pleasant open space, but there is insufficient open space or greenery for residents, both in the block itself and nearby.

The cycle provision doesn’t meet with Sheffield City Council guidelines for student accommodation – there should be at least 685 long-stay spaces, but this application only provides for 500. Also, there is no provision for tricycles/hand-cycles.

I have strong concerns about the extra traffic generated – the travel plan calculates about 196 two-way trips per day to the block for refuse collections, taxi drop-offs, deliveries, etc. I feel this is a huge underestimate. I am also concerned there is no provision for loading bays etc, and there could potentially be multiple vehicles pulling up on the pavements nearby – causing obstruction and danger for people on foot.

If we are to truly regard ourselves as a ‘green city’, as Sheffield promotes itself, then this development simply doesn’t belong here”.


Planning Application for a mixed use building to form 963 co-living residential units on land bounded by Rockingham Street, Wellington Street and Trafalgar Street

South Yorkshire Residential Design Guide