Groningen does have the solution to the room shortage.

Transform single rooms into doubles. Housing complex Proxima is Groningen’s smart solution to the room shortage.

A walk along the Koegangen on Zernike Campus will remain a muddy mess for some time to come. On the street and former lawn, workmen plod and machines growl. This is the spot where in the coming months Proxima will rise up, a complex with 401 student rooms.

The building project is the culmination of many years of fighting a losing battle. For years, student housing on campus was a wish of both Hanze and the University of Groningen. A wish as big as it was impossible to fulfil. (Apparently, the earlier obstacles have since been removed).

At least a roof over one’s head and a bed to sleep on

So next summer, a residential complex will have been erected on the Koegangen. Four buildings constructed from wooden modules will house 401 foreign students.

The rooms are a welcome solution to the room shortage that has been dragging on for many years, affecting foreign students in particular. But there’s more: really clever is the possibility of turning the rooms into rooms-for-two during peak periods, which will allow Proxima to accommodate 802 students.

When foreign students arrive at Groningen soil at the start of the academic year, they will at least have a roof over their heads and a bed to sleep in. And they probably enjoy some rest and have time to look for accommodation where they can stay for a longer period of time.

The rent for a room in Proxima has not yet been set. Lisa Plender, spokesman for student housing corporation SSH, expects to be able to give a definite answer on that by the end of February. ‘What I can say now is that we calculate our rents according to the WWSO-rules (the Dutch housing valuation system for non-self-contained housing, ed.).’

In Groningen, not one student will sleep under a bridge

Proxima is Latin for nearest, which is a fitting name for a complex adjacent to the educational buildings on Zernike. The distance from Proxima to the city centre is a bit longer, but that should not be a problem for international students who want to enjoy Groningen’s nightlife.

The agreement that the municipality, the University of Groningen and Hanze have concluded with SSH lasts until 2034. Until the summer of that year, international students will not have to sleep in a park or under a bridge.