Host strikes forward funding deal for Bristol PBSA

Host's PBSA occupies a prime location just 200 metres from Bristol Temple Meads station overlooking Bristol’s famous Floating Harbour.

Host's Avon Street PBSA scheme in central Bristol | PBSA News
Host's Avon Street PBSA scheme in central Bristol.

Host Student Housing Ltd is set to begin work on a 447-bed purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) scheme in central Bristol. It is being backed by a global insurance institutional investor with a £85m forward funding deal. Oli Buckland of CBRE acted for Host throughout the deal, with Eversheds providing legal advice.

Situated on Avon Street in Bristol City Centre, the PBSA scheme occupies a prime location just 200 metres from Bristol Temple Meads station – overlooking Bristol’s famous Floating Harbour. Also, it is adjacent to the University of Bristol’s new Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus.

Host secured planning approval in March 2022 for the scheme which will deliver the new student accommodation, in the form of a hub, across three buildings.

The accommodation will comprise 170 ensuite clusters arranged in six and eight bed flats and 277 self-contained studios. Students will have access to an exceptional range of communal amenity facilities on the ground floor and upper levels.

These include communal lounge and study areas, a wellness suite, a social sports and games area linked to outdoor recreational space, a large laundry area, and roof terraces on the second and tenth floors affording views across the River Avon, and the immediately adjacent new University of Bristol campus.

The development has now commenced on site with GMI Construction Group acting as the main contractor. It is scheduled to be completed in time for the start of the 2026/7 academic year.

The start on site represents a shot in the arm for the Bristol student accommodation market, which is one of the most undersupplied in the UK given the lack of PBSA schemes in recent years.

Host’s Avon Street development will relieve some of the housing pressure on residential areas in the city and provide high-quality student accommodation.

It will also be a major boost for wider regeneration plans for the area, lying at the heart of the £500m Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus being developed by the University of Bristol.

“Given the level of unmet demand from students currently unable to access PBSA in Bristol, the development of Avon Street is great news for the city. Alongside our partners, we are excited to realise the ambitious plans for Avon Street, which are focussed on combining the highest quality accommodation with an outstanding location to provide the best student living experience available in Bristol.”

John Nesbitt, Managing Director at Host Student Housing Ltd

The company has also just appointed Chris Mcilhinney as its new Commercial Director. Chris will be instrumental in shaping and implementing Host’s commercial strategy.

Chris will ensure that Host continues to meet the evolving needs of its students and investment partners. He will work closely with marketing and systems teams to continue Host’s innovation drive across its nationwide operations. His experience will further enhance their ability to drive occupancy, revenue and operational efficiency.