Planners turn down proposed Northern Quarter aparthotel in Manchester

George Sell By George Sell
1 week ago | Updated 1 week ago

UK: A 13-storey aparthotel proposed by developers Salboy and Factory Estates in Manchester’s Northern Quarter has been refused by the city council’s planning committee.

The decision on the proposed project - which was to have been operated by Zoku, is a rare departure from planning officer recommendations, which said the scheme should be approved.

The decision comes three months after the project first appeared on the committee agenda, and follows heated debates over the appropriateness of the height for the location, the loss of buildings currently on the plot, and the impact on neighbours.

Simon Ismail of Salboy, owned by bookmaker Bet Fred founder Fred Done, spoke in defence of the scheme at the committee last week, saying that the developer "had not anticipated so many concerns" but that he was "wholeheartedly committed to a scheme of quality".

Cllr Joan Davis spoke on behalf of six other city councillors objecting against the hotel, calling it a "long running saga" and stating her belief that the scheme would contribute to loss of buildings which give character to area.

Prior to the application reaching committee, the designs had already been amended to reduce the tallest element by one storey to 13 floors. Throughout the course of the process, the project has been through varying degrees of peer scrutiny, including examination from architect Stephen Hodder.

It is not yet known if the developers will appeal the decision. Phil Doyle, lead architect on the project at 5plus, said: "We're reviewing options with the client."

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