New student housing on Bornsesteeg

Idealis to build 350 rooms in Wageningen and let go of 90 rooms in Ede.
The common room at the Javastraat. Photo: Idealis.

‘De Bornsesteeg is an entry to the campus, but both the city and the university aren’t happy with how it looks’, says Idealis director Bart van As. ‘We have been discussing with the municipality and the university for some time whether we might build new student housing at the Bornsesteeg. Constructing something beautiful there creates a nice gateway to the campus.’ The plan is to construct at least 350 rooms.

It is not yet clear what that gateway will look like: a design is lacking. Van As: ‘We are still gathering ideas. What is the best spot? As soon as this is clear, we can start drawing.’ In addition to housing, Idealis also aims to erect a new office at the location.

Public living room

The corona pandemic has Idealis reconsidering housing formats. Van As: ‘Covid speeds up certain developments, such as online education. How will these developments impact the demand for student housing, both qualitatively and quantitatively? Students now lean towards autonomous housing because of corona. But this is temporary. Students also need social contact and want to be able to meet one another. Not just on the campus, but also at home. This is why many students appreciate group housing.’

‘In the Nieuwe Kanaal housing project, we created a public living room where students can study and meet. This prevents them from having to study, eat and sleep in the same room. The Javastraat also consists of independent units, but, there too, we created a large common room along the corridor. We aim to do the same at the Bornsesteeg construction.’

Fewer rooms in Ede

While the number of rooms in Wageningen is to increase, rooms in Ede will be let go; a total of 90 rooms. ‘These are apartments we rent from Woonstede. We will terminate the lease as Woonstede urgently needs the apartments. In Ede, the waiting lists for housing are incredibly long, while Idealis has rooms that remain unoccupied for months. By returning rooms to Woonstede, we contribute to a better flow in the housing market. Moreover, the quality of the rooms does not meet Idealis standards.’

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