Customers of a proposed seven-storey high hotel in Cliftonville will be encouraged to travel to the venue by public transport.
The 120-room hotel, on Hoser’s Corner at Ethelbert Crescent, has been designed by Guy Hollaway Architects for applicant Beechworth Properties Ltd. It will have no customer parking spaces – apart from two disabled bays -although there will be 16 cycle spaces.
The plans, exclusively revealed by The Isle of Thanet News earlier this month, show the intention to instead suggest “alternative modes of transport.” Guests who choose to drive will be directed to Margate car parks and off-street parking.
Proposals also include drop-off bays on the southern side of Ethelbert Crescent with space for four vehicles.
‘No customer parking’
In a transport brief forming part of the planning application to Thanet council, the architects say: “Customers of the hotel will be informed at the time of booking that no customer parking is available, with information provided on local public car parks and alternative modes of transport.
“Additionally, the provision of three loading / unloading spaces at the site will allow visitors to set down their luggage at the hotel prior to locating a public car parking space.
“The take up of on-street spaces associated with the hotel use is likely to be low, however, there is spare capacity available within a short walk distance should a guest not take up a public car parking space. It is therefore not considered that the proposals will have a significant or ‘severe’ impact on the local highway network.”
In the document the architects suggest customer will use car parks due to “low” price, quoting Dreamland car park as £1.60ph. It is actually £4 for the first hour, increasing by £2ph after that to £10 for four hours or a maximum of £12 for 15 hours. Market Street is listed as 90ph, it has in fact increased to £1.10ph. Other listed car parks also show the rates before the hike in charges this April.
The hotel will feature a unique multi-colour metal façade, which the architects say “reflects the famous Margate deck chair and plays on the regeneration of tourism and culture that is being seen throughout this eclectic seaside town.”
It is expected to cater to the rise of artists moving into the town attracted by the rejuvenation of Dreamland, Turner Contemporary and the new Carl Freedman gallery earmarked for the former Thanet Press building in Union Crescent.
Guy Hollaway Architects say:“The proposal for the Hosers Corner site responds to the increased demand for hotel rooms, which has been identified since the opening of the Turner Contemporary and the recent rejuvenation of Dreamland, both of which have given Margate a new sense of place and identity in the midst of the town’s revival, and have raised visitor numbers.”
They say the hotel, which has been reduced from the original 8 storey proposal, will have 6 wheelchair accessible rooms and a restaurant on the ground floor.
The application proposes the creation of just 15 jobs, with five of those part-time, for hotel staff.
The architects had in 2013 been appointed by Kent County Council for a plan to create a 60-bed ‘destination’ hotel and restaurant with multi-coloured shutters on the seafront at the Rendezvous site by Turner Contemporary but this did not come to fruition.
The scheme for the hotel, restaurant and 18 apartments was granted planning permission in October 2014 and minutes from this time reveal the authority had hoped the hotel would be built and open by Christmas 2017.
But the £10 million plan was mothballed because KCC needed “third-party funding” to get work underway.
Four public comments have so far been submitted, two in favour and two which object to the height of the hotel and a feared increase in parking problems for the area.
A decision on the application is yet to be made.