Growthpoint Student Accommodation REIT will open three new university student residences for South Africa’s 2023 university academic year. Peak Studios on the doorstep of the University of Cape Town, Brooklyn Studios alongside the University of Pretoria and Apex Studios at the entrance of the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) in Johannesburg will together house 2,200 students in brand-new quality accommodation.
Building on its trusted range of student residences designed to enhance the university experience and academic success, the new properties increase Growthpoint Student Accommodation REIT’s purpose-built upscale student accommodation portfolio to 7,200 beds. Its 2023 portfolio includes 10 residences serving tertiary education students in three cities across South Africa.
It has also launched Thrive Student Living by Growthpoint, a growing student accommodation platform and programme, instantly recognisable wherever it is found nationwide.
“Thrive Student Living offers a new perspective on learning and living, devoted to academic success, personal growth, safety and community – creating environments where students can thrive. It is committed to supporting tomorrow’s leaders to reach their full potential,” says George Muchanya, Head of Growthpoint Investment Partners, manager of Growthpoint Student Accommodation REIT.
Growthpoint Student Accommodation REIT leverages the skills and expertise of leading South African international property company Growthpoint Properties, with local purpose-built student accommodation pioneers Feenstra Group, to provide accommodation that is not only purposely designed for student life but also purpose-managed to provide a more successful, supportive and satisfying university experience.
All elements of the student experience are considered from the welcoming, upmarket physical accommodation infrastructure to social and environmental factors such as communal space, on-site amenities like Wi-Fi and computer labs, and safety and security. They also offer 24/7 support from friendly Student Life Managers, provide a strong bridge between the academic faculty and the student’s home base, and have a year-round calendar of programmes and events.
All this is blended into Thrive Student Living, which is uniquely designed to enhance the university experience through an immersive campus lifestyle with comprehensive academic support and a fun range of cultural, social, sporting, well-being, career and supporting activities.
“More than premium student accommodation with easy access to classes, Thrive Student Living is designed to foster inclusive learning communities for achieving academic success, and also for students to get the most out of campus life and make great memories,” explains Muchanya.
Because learning isn’t one-size-fits-all, there are various Thrive Student Living options suited to a wide range of private and NSFAS students. Thrive Student Living environments are also the natural choice for corporate bursary programmes invested in the positive educational outcomes of their bursary recipients. They are managed to the high standards of JSE-listed Growthpoint, which takes seriously its duty of care for the people who use its buildings and is active in initiatives for quality education access across the entire education value chain as part of its transformative corporate social responsibility.
Growthpoint Student Accommodation REIT is not only opening new doors for students but has opened up a new opportunity for investors, and specifically impact investors, to access the defensive, alternative student accommodation asset class with strong fundamentals and proven resilience.
Since launching in December 2021, it has raised R1.4bn in equity, including Growthpoint’s co-investment of R240m, and continues to attract solid investor interest. Growthpoint Investment Partners has appointed a dedicated Fund Manager of Growthpoint Student Accommodation REIT, Amogelang Mocumi.
Its portfolio of 7,200 beds for the 2023 university year is valued at some R3bn.The properties include Burnett Studios, Hatfield Studios, Festival Studios, Varsity Studios, Kingsway Place, The Richmond and Central Studios. Each Thrive Student Living residence is an inclusive community for learning located a short walk from its university campus. While part of a national network of student accommodation, each has its own identity and character, unique to and created by its community.
Its three newest properties, Peak Studios, Brooklyn Studios and Apex Studios, are being developed by Growthpoint Properties and Feenstra Group. Growthpoint Properties is recognised for its green building leadership, creating healthy, sustainable environments and operating with a social consciousness that adds value to communities. Fashioning vibrant campus communities aligns with Growthpoint’s ESG goals.
“With Growthpoint Student Accommodation REIT expected to achieve significant growth towards a national tertiary education footprint with prime tailor-made new developments for which there is a great demand, its positive impacts go beyond education and ultimately boost job opportunities, municipal revenues and communities,” confirms Muchanya.