Council Seeks Powers to Introduce Business Rates
19th Nov 2018
Purpose-built student accommodation in Plymouth could be rented out to tourists for anything from two nights to eight weeks, as providers seek to utilise rooms that would otherwise be left empty.
Councillors have offered their support to the idea, suggesting tourists would otherwise find it difficult to book a hotel room due to a shortage of rooms.
Although several hotel developments are in the pipeline, student operator iQ Student Accommodation is seeking permission to use student flats at Astor House as holiday apartments during the summer.
A formal application has been submitted to Plymouth City Council, who are deliberating the proposal, amid opposition from members of the public.
A condition of the building being built five years stipulated use solely by students, but iQ are looking to have this dropped during out of term times.
If approved, the rooms will be available to anyone between June 15 and September 2 each year.
Documents submitted as part of the application said: "It is expected that the rooms will be occupied by professionals, parents of existing students and those on weekend breaks. However, the rooms could equally be used by students on summer courses or visiting academics. Given the premium quality of the accommodation it will be targeted towards higher end guests."
"Short stay guests will be able to book studio rooms whilst larger family groups will be able to book en-suite flats if they are fully vacant (i.e. these will not be let out on a room by room basis)."
"The proposal would contribute towards the range of temporary and tourist accommodation in the city."
Although city planners have backed the plans, residents have raised concerns over parking and its suitability for residential use.
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