University Locks is a new student accommodation building offering a mix of 659 high-quality en-suite and shared bathroom student bedrooms at the eastern edge of Birmingham’s learning quarter. The scheme raises the standard of student living in Birmingham by providing a superior level of accommodation that reflects the city’s status as a centre of academic excellence.
The scheme is an exemplar addition to the emerging Eastside Masterplan. The southern tower stands at 19 storeys and defines a key threshold to Eastside and the city beyond, acting as a gateway and a landmark within the wider urban context. Through the sensitive use of contextual materials, the project enhances Eastside’s emerging sense of place and identity, as well as acknowledging the area's industrial past.
The site layout maximises the potential of the prominent canal-side location by creating a series of raised public and private courtyards which connect into the existing public cycling and pedestrian routes and contribute to the wider public realm; establishing safe, inclusive environments that encourage people to dwell and socialise.
University Locks creates a strong, vibrant community with close links to Digbeth’s creative industries. The scheme also supports the ongoing regeneration of Eastside through the creation of flexible and affordable start-up business units which will provide incubation spaces for student enterprise projects.