A major drive in Birmingham to create 5,000 highquality privately-operated student beds is the pipeline, local experts have revealed.
Property firm Knight Frank said the move, providing accommodation in new developments, will meet surging demand.
It would improve the city's offering which has fallen behind student centres such as Manchester and Nottingham.
Ben Pryce-Boutwood, head of residential land at Knight Frank's Birmingham office, said: "In other cities, privately operated student housing has long been recognised as a key source of regeneration."
The quantity and quality of Birmingham's provision was far behind other popular student locations, he claimed.
Mr Pryce- Boutwood said: " Manchester and Nottingham have successfully enhanced their student offering by welcoming around 7,000 student beds operated by private companies within each city.
" In comparison, Birmingham is estimated to have around only 2,000 beds with high quality student accommodation providers.
"The planned 5,000 new beds will go some way to bringing Birmingham up to speed with our rivals, as well as revive run down areas of the city centre and fringes including the Gun Quarter, Eastside, Lee Bank and the prime student village at Selly Oak."
A development bringing 800 beds is planned for the Selly Oak.
Sold by Knight Frank to student accommodation developer Unite Group, the deal will bring "quality accommodation for students as well as providing much needed regeneration", Knight Frank said.
The development site in Selly Oak is located on Elliott Road, within walking distance of the train station, Birmingham University and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
The former industrial site, which was brought to the market last year by Knight Frank, spans 1.8 hectares (4.5 acres) and is to be built in two phases, with the first student homes ready for occupation at the start of the 2006/07 academic year.
Although the critical mass of students has long been in Selly Oak, it is hoped the Elliott Road development will trigger further provision of quality accommodation in the area to support the growth of Birmingham University.