A DEVELOPER has said it could build more purpose-built student housing as part of its “long-term commitment to Brighton” after winning its third planning permission within a few hundred yards of each other.

Brighton and Hove City Council granted planning permission for 44 new flats to redevelop the former White Crow pub on the Vogue Gyratory in Lewes Road, Brighton.

McLaren Property had already received planning permission for 96 purpose-built student rooms at two sites in close proximity in the same road.

One of the sites is already completed and fully occupied with students from both the University of Sussex and Brighton – proof the firm said that demand for purpose-built student accommodation off the two universities’ campuses is high.

Councillors praised the scheme in awarding it permission but also raised concerns about the impact of the new housing on traffic flow around the Vogue Gyratory, pedestrian access for students and the build-up of purpose-built student blocks so close to each other.

Conservative councillor Joe Miller said: “Its further student accommodation which is a good thing because we will have fewer HMOs but I do have concerns about the cumulative impact of all three of these developments of student accommodation."

Labour councillor Penny Gilbey said the new scheme was “so much better” than the previous plans for the site which she described as “horrific” and “overbearing”.

A McLaren spokesman said they were “delighted” by the decision to grant planning permission and vowed to work with the city council to ensure that the development is “well managed and operates in harmony with its neighbours”.

He added: “McLaren has a long-term commitment to Brighton and we see it as a city with huge potential, given the expansion of the city’s two leading universities and an ongoing need to provide new purpose-built student rooms.

“Whilst we don’t want to comment on individual sites at this stage, we see Brighton as an attractive place to invest and seek further opportunities.”

Ward councillor Pete West said he was pleased that developers had listened to his concerns about the impact of the building on the “landmark site” because of its visual prominence along Lewes Road.