A PLANNING application for the €50m redevelopment of the Metropole Hotel will be lodged with Cork City Council shortly.
The hotel owners, Trigon Hotels, plan to refurbish and expand the 120-year-old Metropole, together with the construction of a new, urban hotel called ‘The M’, which will be built on an adjacent site near Harley Street.
The two hotels will be linked through a first-floor bridge across Harley Street.
The overall development will deliver more than 400 hotel bedrooms and will include a double basement car park The historic front section of the Metropole facing MacCurtain Street will be retained while the rear section will be replaced with a new six-storey building and a seventh-floor penthouse, an elevated rooftop bar, upgraded spa facilities and function rooms and meeting rooms.
Facing the river Lee on the ground floor will be three new retail units.
The Metropole plan coincides with City Hall plans for a new cycle and pedestrian bridge that will cross the north channel of the river Lee from Merchant's Quay to Harley Street.
Once fully occupied, the total number of employees in the hotel and retail units is estimated at 200 people. The construction phase is expected to take approximately three years to complete, during which up to 300 people will be employed.
The bridge is due for completion in 2019 and will create better access from the city centre to MacCurtain Street and the new 'Victorian Quarter'.
Aaron Mansworth, Director of Trigon Hotels said the investment plans represent a significant tourism opportunity for the city.
“This is a wonderful opportunity to move forward with exciting renewal plans for MacCurtain Street and the historic Victorian Quarter. The proposed restoration and expansion of the Metropole Hotel, in addition to the development of ‘The M’ hotel, will create significant local employment, bringing additional tourists and visitors to the area which is critical to the future economic prosperity of our city," he said.