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GSA celebrates construction milestone at St Crispin’s House

Global Student Accommodation (GSA), the global leader in student housing, and leading UK Design & Build construction company, McAleer & Rushe have celebrated the ‘topping out’ of student housing scheme St Crispin’s House, Norwich. The construction milestone signifies the installation of the final piece of the structure of the building.

Originally a 1970’s office block, St Crispin’s House is an example of how buildings can be repurposed, refurbished, extended, and given a new lease of life. When it opens in time for the 2023/24 academic year, the property will be home to 684 students, who will benefit from on-site facilities including communal spaces, a gym, podcast studio, a multi-purpose event room and a combination of individual and joint study spaces to support them on their higher education journey.

By retaining the existing structure, the impacts of the development process are significantly minimised. Benefits include the reduction in environmental impact, a reduced development timeframe and subsequently a reduced impact on the local community. Additional initiatives will be implemented to secure a rating of BREEAM Very Good and a Fitwel three-star accreditation, the highest level available for St Crispin’s House. This includes 75% of the total roof level designed as a green roof, the installation of air-source heat pumps, and all electric heating.

This approach is embraced by Yugo, GSA’s global operating partner, who are committed to delivering incredible experiences for students, supported by three core pillars — YugoEco, YuPro, and YuGrow. This includes identifying opportunities to cut carbon, reduce water use, purchase energy from renewable resources, and implement data measurement systems.

Norwich’s leading universities, the University of East Anglia, and Norwich University of the Arts, attract 17,000 students combine, but 63% of full-time students are currently unable to access university or purpose-built student accommodation in the city. St Crispin’s House will contribute to reducing this shortfall and respond to the evolving needs and expectations of today’s students.

Commenting on the milestone, Doug Barton, Development Manager at GSA said:

“I would like to thank everyone at McAleer & Rushe and the wider construction team who have helped us to reach this fantastic milestone at St Crispin’s House. It’s testament to the expertise and our working relationship that we are another step closer to delivering much needed student housing for Norwich. I look forward to continuing to work closely with the team as we target completion in July 2023.”

Commenting on the ceremony, Mark Elliott, Contracts Director at McAleer & Rushe said:

“We are delighted to have reached the topping out milestone in the sustainable redevelopment of St Crispin’s House, which once complete, will provide market-leading student residences in the heart of Norwich. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the entire construction team for their hard work and our client Global Student Accommodation for their open and collaborative approach. We look forward to continuing our engagement partnerships within the local community as we continue with construction which is targeted to complete in July 2023.”

Simon Griffiths, Regional Director UK and Ireland at Yugo added:

“We are thrilled to see St. Crispin’s House heading into the final phase of construction. Once finished, this building and its outstanding amenities will be a hub for students to live, learn and grow during their university years. We are eager to open the doors to Yugo’s first living space in Norwich before the start of the 2023/24 academic year and partner with the universities here to provide the much-needed additional spaces for students to live their best life.”

Throughout the construction of St Crispin’s House, GSA and McAleer & Rushe are proud to support two important charities. The Lighthouse Club, which supports construction workers and their families, providing them with emotional, physical and financial wellbeing. And The Feed, a social enterprise with a mission to motivate change in people to prevent poverty, hunger and homelessness in Norwich. The businesses were delighted that The Feed was able to host the ‘topping out’ reception at their café at Waterloo Park.

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