Glasgow is one of the worst-hit cities in the middle of the UK student housing crisis. Among news of mass homelessness and poverty among students, universities are being pushed to take steps in the right direction even if it meant losing out on tuition fees.
In 2022, the Student Representative Council (SRC) of the University of Glasgow urged the admission authorities to cap the intake of students in the absence of proper housing facilities. The university was requested to refrain from unhinged intake for at least the next five years, and newly accepted students were asked to drop out if they could not find a place to live by the beginning of the session. In October 2022, the university ended up paying to host 70 students in hotels because they were not able to secure accommodation and were being forced to live in unsuitable conditions.
In 2023, the city attracted 1.75 Mn students to apply for higher education but with only 20,000 odd PBSA beds available, along with a few more private accommodation options. The ratio of existing students to beds in 2022 was 3:1, which has now become 4:1 with a steady rise of 12.3% since 2017. Amid the crisis, Cooper Cromar has submitted plans to build a new 16-storey PBSA on Renfield Street, with premium amenities and a roof circling a scenic central courtyard. The construction, slated to begin next year, is part of the second phase of Glasgow’s Broadway Central development. It will convert the older plans of a 10000 sqft office block into a PBSA with approval from the Glasgow City Council (Glasgow).
This is one of several steps that will be instrumental in making sure that students have a safe place to live comfortably as they study in the UK. The population of emigrating students is between the ages of 18 and 26 years, for whom finding a proper place to live is especially important. The introduction of a 2-year work permit at the end of the course has inspired many students to invest in higher education in the UK. This, combined with the post-pandemic opening of markets has led to a floodgate of demand for higher education. It will take strong and decisive measures on the part of the university authorities and government to balance the demand with an adequate supply of student housing.