AN 11-STOREY block of student accommodation in the centre of Southampton has added £12million in value to the economy, a report says.

Southampton Crossings is a 527-bedroom development overlooking Watts Park.

It was built by Midas Construction for developer Victoria Hall Management Limited on behalf of RPMI Railpen – the investment manager for the £30billion railways pension scheme.

The developer drew up an employment and skills plan to maximise the scheme’s benefit for the local area.

A report by Southampton City Council said the developer offered 12 work placements for students, 15 new apprenticeships and jobs for six local people, as well as facilitating training and qualifications for several people.

The team also supported 34 construction careers events in the area, engaging with more than 1,200 young people.

David Swieton, employment and skills plan coordinator at Southampton City Council, which produced the Social Return on Investment (SROI) report, said: “The activities have had a positive impact on individuals and communities across the city. “The Midas team has represented the development in an exemplary manner whilst engaging effectively around skills for growth in the industry, talent matching for local people and aspirational work with students.”

Ian Dewhurst, business development director at Midas Construction, said: “Midas is committed to leaving a positive impact on the communities it works with, bringing benefit to those living in those communities. We were delighted to see just how much value this significant project brought to the city.

“Supporting local employment and training opportunities is so important to us and it’s fantastic to see this development have such an impact.

“We are proud to have been part of this modern, state-of-the-art facility that has not only benefited the local economy but will provide a home away from home for students living in the city.”

Council leader Cllr Christopher Hammond said: “It’s great to see the completion of this development and the benefit it has had to the wider economy. Midas has created an impressive building, whilst creating opportunities for local people.

“As a council, we’re working to make our city greener, fairer and healthier. To achieve this, we’re working with a range of stakeholders to ensure that investment in the city creates local jobs, wealth is retained here and is beneficial to our communities. Our ambition, approach and strength of partnerships makes this a great city to invest in.”

The developer said the scheme strengthened Railpen’s commitment to environmental, social and governance factors across its portfolio.