DEMAND is high for on-campus accommodation at University College Cork, with more than 4,000 applications received ahead of the coming academic year.
Campus Accommodation UCC currently manages five complexes: Victoria Mills, University Hall, Victoria Lodge, Castlewhite Apartments, and Mardyke Hall, with a total of 1,277 spaces.
Students are allocated beds in a lottery-style draw.
“There will always be a high demand for campus accommodation by current and prospective UCC students due to the low-cost, high-standard model of student accommodation provided in all of the UCC-owned student complexes,” said Gary Mulcahy, student residential services and community relations officer at UCC.
“Students are also drawn to campus accommodation because of their proximity to the university, the all-inclusive billing, and the sense of community the students get when living with a large number of other UCC students.”
Mr Mulcahy said he is not worried that not all students who apply to Campus Accommodation will be offered a bed in a UCC-owned apartment complex, due to the number of available beds across Cork.
“Despite what the figures suggest, you must take into account that some students may not take up a place in campus accommodation due to having secured a bed elsewhere or not getting the required Leaving Certificate points,” he said.
“We estimate that there are over 2,400 additional private purpose-built student accommodation spaces in Cork for the 2018/19 academic year.
“That does not include the private student rental market and available beds in digs,” he added.
“The same students who are applying to Campus Accommodation may also have applied to numerous private student complexes and private houses.”
Students who do not receive an offer of a bed in campus accommodation, and have to seek accommodation elsewhere, do not necessarily pay a lot more money in most private student complexes than the overall rates in UCC-owned accommodation, according to Mr Mulcahy.
However, he added that this can depend on the standard of accommodation provided, the location, the accommodation type, and the cost of utilities.
The Evening Echo revealed earlier this year that UCC Students’ Union refused to promote a new private student accommodation complex in the city, saying its prices are far too high.
A new development on Western Road, Amnis House, is set to open in August. The cheapest of the rooms there will set students back €210 a week on a 38-week contract.
“I do not think that the number of Campus Accommodation beds will turn students off UCC, especially considering the options currently available and the options that will be available in the coming years,” said Mr Mulcahy.
“At the moment, UCC is preparing to build a 255-bed apartment complex on the old Crow’s Nest site in Victoria Cross while Uninest, a private accommodation provider, is in the process of building over 400 beds on the Brewery Quarter site.
“These are just two of many student accommodation projects that are currently being built or in the planning stages,” he added.