CITY planners have told developers behind a proposed 48-room hostel on Grand Parade to submit further information on plans before it makes a decision on the application.
London company Westhill, through an Irish subsidiary Bluescape Limited, is planning to convert the former tourist office on Grand Parade into a six-storey hostel made up of 48 rooms providing 284-bed spaces.
The development called ‘Tourist House’ at 40-42 Grand Parade will also include a ground floor bar along with shared toilet/shower facilities, laundry room, storerooms, rooftop terrace, reception, social area, kitchen and bicycle storage.
It includes the demolition of buildings to the rear of 40-42 Grand Parade and construction of a new six-storey extension.
A number of objections were lodged against the application.
Planners have written to the developers requesting they submit a revised visual impact statement taking into account views from O’Sullivan’s Quay, Nano Nagle Bridge, the southern and northern ends of Grand Parade, Tuckey Street and South Mall.
3D imaging of the proposed development and all its buildings, as well as a revised plan omitting the top floor, have also been requested.
The developers have also been told to clarify what the social area of the building will consist of and show that the proposed accommodation will meet the required minimum standards in Fáilte Ireland’s guide to youth hostels around communal areas, private rooms, bathrooms and storage areas.
Details must also be provided around the bar proposed and whether this will be solely for use of hostel patrons or open to the public and developers must furnish a traffic management plan for the period of construction.
When announcing their plans, spokesperson for Westlink said that despite its scale and status as the State’s second-largest city, Cork is only 4th in terms of the number of hotels available.
They said: “Currently we understand there is only one hostel in the central island area. This compares unfavourably with Galway where 10 hostels were identified in the City Centre including one located just off Eyre Square.
“The hostel world website provides further evidence of the under provision of hostel accommodation in Cork. The site lists 25 hostels in Dublin, 13 in Galway, 4 in Cork and 7 in Killarney.”