PLANS to turn a former bank in Gloucester Road into an ‘apart-hotel’ have caused an outcry.
More than 50 objections have been lodged on Bristol City Council’s online planning site to the proposal to create nine serviced apartments. The development in the NatWest bank, which shut two years ago, would retain the commercial unit on the ground floor and open apartments in the building and in a new extension fronting Shadwell Road.
Agents for the owners, Honor Properties, have explained that: “The applicants are essentially seeking to make a more efficient and effective use of the site, creating additional development that as seen from the public realm preserves the character and appearance of the Conservation Area, if not enhances it.
“The proposed extension is designed in a simple contemporary-modern style but will incorporate materials that reflect the main building. “
They add: “The applicants are established owners and managers of serviced apartments and other residential accommodation in Bristol. They are looking to expand their business by creating an apart-hotel. They have purchased the property with the intention of bringing it back into full, beneficial use and their vision is to create, high-quality visitor accommodation.”
But people living nearby say that what is needed is not tourist accommodation but permanent and affordable homes for local people.
The biggest concern among objectors is over parking. Neighbours say it is already a huge problem, with constant parking on double yellow lines and on pavements, causing problems for the young families and elderly people who live in Shadwell Road.
The plan for 72-74 Gloucester Road can be found on the council planning site with the reference 23/03351/F