A PLANNING application has been lodged for a new hotel on Cork's South Mall in the former National Irish Bank premises.
Just weeks after the Maldron opened a new hotel on the street a new application has been lodged seeking the go-ahead for 58 new hotel rooms at 71 South Mall.
The developers, South Mall Hospitality Ltd, are seeking permission to demolish the roof and upper floors of the four-storey limestone building that dates to the 1880s.
Two new storeys would be added to create a five-storey structure. A new six-storey building would also be constructed to the rear of the premises fronting onto Morgan Street, the narrow lane alongside the Imperial Hotel.
More than 1,300 hotel beds are currently planned or already under construction in Cork, with further proposals for new hostels, aparthotels and even a floating hotel.
Figures released last month showed that nine out of ten hotel beds occupied in Cork last summer, with average room rates increasing to more than €100 per night.
The data, compiled by Fáilte Ireland, illustrates an urgent need for an increase in tourism accommodation, according to the tourism development authority.
The application for the new South Mall hotel states the main banking hall will form a new bar/restaurant/cafe and a new accessible roof deck will face onto the Mall.
The customer entrance will be located on Morgan Street and the development will also include improvements to the street itself.
The application also proposes to change the use of the building from financial to hotel services.
In 2016, planners in City Hall refused permission for a new restaurant on the South Mall as the street is to be kept for office use.
PLans were lodged seeking permission to convert the ground floor of the former Ulster Bank premises on the corner of the South Mall and Princes Street into an almost 300-square metre restaurant.
A similar planning application had been refused the previous year with City Hall saying a restaurant would contravene objectives to retain offices on ground floors of the South Mall.