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UC Stakeholder Update

UC Stakeholder Update

January 2014

Enrolment numbers for 2014

Student numbers at UC are tipped to climb for the first time since the earthquakes.

New to UC domestic applications are up about 1.7 percent year-on-year. While it is very early in the cycle for returning students and we will not know the exact number of students for this year until the first week of March, signs are promising.

Applications to enrol for new to UC international students have increased substantially compared with this time last year. Not all the applications will turn into enrolled students, but there is certainly a renewed level of interest from international students.

UC has graduated more than 11,000 students and enrolled nearly 9000 new students since the 2010 earthquake.

Nearly a third of UC students have gone on to study at postgraduate level at UC or at universities around the world.

UC is in the top three universities in New Zealand for student course and programme completion rates and progression to higher levels of study. It was recently named in the top 250 universities in the world.

UC is the third largest Christchurch employer and contributes $1.5 billion to the economy annually.

UC Ilam campus transformation UC has received a commitment of up to $260 million in Government funding to support upgraded engineering facilities and building a new Research and Innovation Centre on the Ilam campus, and is embarking on an extensive campus revitalisation programme.

UC is currently spending $2m a week in insurance-funded remediation. Currently there are 12 active building sites on campus and more than 600 tradespeople on site each day.

UC presence in the CBD UC is committed to the Ilam campus, but has not ruled out a presence in the Christchurch CBD if that presence has teaching, research and community engagement benefits, and CBD presence enhances learning. As an example, UC is interested in a location near the hospital for applied research and teaching applied medical science and in allied medical services.

UC is represented on the working group with the Canterbury District Health Board (CDHB), the Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology (CPIT), the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA), and Otago University. Other options may also be considered, provided that the benefits are clear and there is limited cost impact on students and the University.

Student accommodation in the CBD There has been recent commentary on the opportunity to create student accommodation in the CBD.

While postgraduate students might spread out across the city, for UC undergraduate students, living close to the University has strong appeal. Students will choose where they live, and affordability is a key driver. UC operates on $180-$200 per week/42 week per student bed, including electricity but not including catering. It would be difficult to provide accommodation at that cost in the CBD – especially when hotel operators in the same area can get similar money per night.

Before the earthquakes UC, Lincoln, CPIT and CCC spent nearly a year on a joint project to establish an International Student Village on Tuam Street opposite the former Christchurch City Council Offices. The work included student surveys on accommodation preferences, a site master-plan, design work on a staged built environment and consideration of facility operators. The project did not progress.

Dovedale campus master plan A proposed 250-bed student accommodation building on the corner of Solway and Parkstone Avenues will not proceed in time for the 2015 academic year, but will be included in a detailed Dovedale campus master plan.

Short-term student accommodation options developed by the University in the last four months have relieved the immediate pressure.

The Dovedale campus provides the capacity to cater for predicted growth in Christchurch tertiary education. A master plan for the Dovedale campus, aligned with the master plan for the Ilam campus, will set out how UC proposes progressively to develop the Dovedale campus, and provide the community with an opportunity to share their thoughts.

A proposal for the Dovedale campus developed by UC’s architects will be released for community comment about 21 February. Comment will be open for about a week and any feedback will be summarised as part of the final report.

A further period of community engagement and comment will occur from about 17-30 March, with an exhibition of options in the library and workshops with residents and other stakeholders. UC hopes to have the master plan finalised by Easter.

UC has previously proposed a mixed-use concept for the Dovedale campus, including student accommodation, commercial/retail use and leisure activities that would be available to students and the surrounding community.

Development of the Dovedale campus for education purposes, including student accommodation, is a permitted activity in the C4 zone, meaning no resource consent is required. The City Plan requires 40 percent green space to be
retained, meaning UC can only build permanently on areas that are already developed.

The recent 15, four-bedroom house Waimairi Village development on the Ilam Fields car park is allowed, but is only temporary.

UC to look at parking and traffic issues

UC will conduct a parking audit and review of traffic movements around campus in the first quarter of 2014.

UC is mindful of pressure on parking in surrounding streets during term time, and will work with residents to propose a residents parking scheme to the Christchurch City Council. It will also look to implement any recommendations resulting from investigation of traffic issues around campus.

ends

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