Doors open at $16m student accommodation facility in Albany CBD

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Albany's new student housing on York Street.
Camera IconAlbany's new student housing on York Street. Credit: Sarah Makse/ Albany Advertiser

A $16 million student accommodation facility has officially opened in the Albany CBD to take students for this year.

Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan was in Albany on Thursday to cut the ribbon on the Albany Affordable Student Housing project, designed to boost the tertiary education sector in the Great Southern.

A partnership between the State Government and Advance Housing, the facility is on the site of the old Albany Primary School on Serpentine Road, overlooking Alison Hartman Gardens.

Twenty-three of the 40 rooms had been booked before the official opening.

Ms MacTiernan said the accommodation would encourage students from across the world to study in Albany.

“We believe that Albany has a great future as a university town as a tertiary education centre,” she said.

Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan and Advance Housing chairperson Peter Adams.
Camera IconRegional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan and Advance Housing chairperson Peter Adams. Credit: Albany Advertiser/Shannon Smith

“We know that many students from Perth are wanting to come down and do part of their tertiary education program down here.

“Certainly we are seeing increasing numbers of doctoral and post-doctoral students from overseas wanting to come down and study.

“We have got some extraordinary capability down here in the environment and marine science, whether it is the wave energy centre of excellence or the broader marine research.”

The rooms are only available to students, however they are not limited to university students. Students doing TAFE courses, apprenticeships and traineeships are also eligible.

Albany Labor candidate Rebecca Stephens, Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan and Advance Housing chair Peter Adams open the Albany Affordable Student Housing project.
Camera IconAlbany Labor candidate Rebecca Stephens, Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan and Advance Housing chair Peter Adams open the Albany Affordable Student Housing project. Credit: Albany Advertiser/Shannon Smith

Ms MacTiernan said given the state of the rental market in Albany, the opening had come at the right time.

“Accommodation in this town is incredibly tight,” she said. “It would have been very hard for many students to find accommodation in Albany at the moment.”

The facility was designed by H+H architects and built by Wauters Enterprises.

“At the time we started this project, the building industry was in the doldrums and we did this, in part, as a way of stimulating the industry — and indeed it has been very successful in doing that,” Ms MacTiernan said.

“More importantly, it is really going to build Albany as a centre for tertiary education.”

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