Students in Southampton will soon be given an extra option when they are choosing their accommodation as construction on a new halls of residence is due to begin in the new year.

Geoffrey Osborne has entered into a joint venture with Terrace Hill and has already exchanged conditional contracts with Legal & General Property to secure the final funding required to secure the construction for this project.

Once completed the student accommodation will be fitted with 1,104 rooms and provide a major boost for the University of Southampton, which will not only provide an incentive for those already studying at the institute, but is also designed to attract more potential undergraduates to the south coast.

Officials have highlighted the prime location of the development, with it sitting in the city centre, providing good transport links into the heart of Southampton, as well as other parts of the university's campus. The local authority announced in July that planning permission had been granted for the project and officials at Geoffrey Osborne have said that construction is due to begin in early 2013 with a completion date earmarked for summer 2014.

Southampton is home to two major universities; the University of Southampton and Southampton Solent University, with the former being part of the prestigious Russell Group. These institutes both hold a large student population in the south coast with around 40,000 undergraduates and postgraduates attending these facilities during term time. Officials stated that the £70 million Mayflower Plaza will be built over three accommodation blocks ranging from eight to 16 storeys high. Aside from the flats there will also be scope for a shop, café, gym and learning centre at the base of the building.

Philip Leech, chief executive of Terrace Hill, said: "Our student accommodation development at Mayflower Plaza is an extremely attractive, high quality scheme in a city with a large student population, let to a very strong tenant in the University of Southampton on a long lease."

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