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Student Tower Wins Approval

Watkins Jones has secured planning permission for their proposed sixteen floor student tower in central Bristol.

The project features the redevelopment of the former headquarters of Bristol and Avon Police, a much hated 1970s seven floor building that is nearing the end of its life. Although it had lost the police, the building was being successfully rented out to some 80 small businesses to use as office space on a short-term basis. The raised pedestrian walkway, a popular feature in architecture of the sixties and seventies will also be removed.

Replacing it will be a new tower and attached lower-rise wings with accommodation for 499 students over its sixteen floors, plus 600 square metres of commercial space on the ground floor.

The plans include full height corner glazing to provide a double aspect view around the junction the tower overlooks. This projects above the pavement allowing the ground level to be expanded slightly. Elsewhere yellow fins running up the building add a sense of verticality to the aesthetic.

The developer also intends to construct a public square on part of the site that will connect with Watkins Jones proposed redevelopment of the nearby former Magistrates Court.

Demolition will begin on the former police headquarters later in 2014 with construction beginning almost immediately. Completion of the project is anticipated for the summer of 2016.

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