Proposals would replace 1960s building with six new blocks on historic riverside site

Stanton Williams has submitted plans to redevelop a historic student accommodation site at Magdalen College, Oxford.

A planning application drawn up for the college is proposing the construction of six new buildings on the banks of the River Cherwell housing 76 student bedrooms and mixed-use space.

The plans would see the demolition of the early 1960s Waynflete building and several extensions to two grade II-listed buildings dating to the 18th and early 19th centuries.

Magdalen College, founded in 1458, is one of Oxford University’s wealthiest and best performing academically.

But it considers the Waynflete site, which is currently home to first-year students, to be disconnected from the main college site located across the river on the other side of Magdalen Bridge.

Waynflete building

The existing 1960s Waynflete building would be demolished under the plans

Under Stanton Williams’ plans, the first-year students would be relocated to the main site to allow them to better integrate into the college community with the new buildings to house second year students.

The new accommodation would be laid out in a series of cluster flats with large shared kitchens along with a handful of separate apartments for visiting fellows and subdeans.

The existing listed buildings on St Clements would be refurbished and extended to the rear to link them to the new blocks, which would be up to seven storeys in height.

A new riverside terrace would also be built, linking into a central quad garden, a landscaped courtyard and a smaller winter garden.

Ground floor space on St Clements would be reserved for retail use with the scheme also including a multipurpose room for exhibitions, recitals, conferences and gym classes.

The project team also includes heritage consultant Donald Insall Associates, structural and civil engineer Eckersley O’Callaghan, project manager Bidwells, cost consultant Gardiner & Theobald, planning consultant Carter Jonas and landscape architect Seed Landscape Design.

The scheme would be a return to Oxford for Stanton Williams following the completion of the firm’s restoration of Rhodes House last year.

The £38m scheme at the historic grade II*-listed premises of the Rhodes Trust in the centre of the town included the creation of new offices, conference rooms and residential space set within newly landscaped gardens.