The Printworks, Exeter city centre

Project: The Printworks, Exeter city centre

In September 2012, the first set of students moved into The Printworks, 492 bed student accommodation scheme, in Exeter city centre. The multi-million pound project was instigated because of the increasing number of students studying at the University and their need for suitable accommodation. The project was managed by Moorfield Group and designed by architects Stride Treglown, the main contractor was Morgan Sindall.


The site formerly housed James Townsend printers, giving the accommodation its name and the first part of the project involved demolition of the original factory and offices.


The architects held a series of client and student workshops to identify students’ requirements; the final brief was for a modern, safe and sociable environment offering the latest in design and amenities. As a result The Printworks is described by the University as the best student apartments in Exeter


'Our intention with this new student accommodation facility was to ensure that we positioned ourselves at the very front of the market in Exeter. Strides have assisted us in achieving what is a great product with modern room, kitchen and studio designs built both with style and to withstand heavy usage by the students. The building also provides a wow factor with a unique design around the entrance and high quality hard and soft landscaping'.

Niall Southwell of Moorfield

The “hard landscaping” was RonaDeck Resin Bound Surfacing which was laid to 1150 square metres at the entrance to the development, around the perimeter and across the split level courtyard, designed by the architects to address the problem of the site dropping seven metres along its length.


The RonaDeck Resin Bound Surfacing system was supplied as a two-component UV stable polyurethane resin mixed with Silver Moon aggregate blend as chosen by the architect. The resin components were mixed with a slow speed drill and paddle before being added to a large forced action mixer containing the aggregate.  Once the aggregate was fully coated with resin, Ronacrete Approved Contractor Avalon Surfacing spread RonaDeck Resin Bound Surfacing to level and smoothed the surface with a steel float.  The surfacing was laid on an asphalt concrete base also laid by Avalon Surfacing and was ready for foot traffic four hours after finishing.  The surfacing can also be laid on concrete or as part of an EcoGrid, EcoGran or EcoAgg system.