Leading planning and design consultancy Barton Willmore has secured planning permission on behalf of Sanguine Hospitality to convert a Sunderland property in to a 122-bedroom hotel and retail site.
The John Street property is a prominent building in Sunderland city centre, which was once the home of retailer Joplings. However, the property has remained vacant since Joplings closed in 2010.
The building comprises a basement, ground floor, three upper floors and additional accommodation on the fourth/roof level.
The approved plans submitted are to change the use of the first to third floors to a hotel made up of 122 rooms, with the ground floor remaining in retail use as part of a £10 milion project.
A report to planners said the hotel use would “complement the offer of services” within the city centre as the development would “support the economic viability of retail through retaining the ground floor of the Joplings building for retail”.
The application will also assist in “supporting the delivery of the diversification sought” by the city council in terms of Sunderland being home to a “wide range of uses”.
“In conclusion, it is considered that the development proposal meets with the aims and objectives of relevant and contemporary policy guidance and, as such, the principle of development is considered to be acceptable,” the report said.
James Hall, Partner at Barton Willmore’s Newcastle office, commented:
“We’re delighted, it’s great to see this landmark site gain consent for reuse after standing empty for so long.”
Sunderland City Council approved the plans at a meeting on 8 March 2016.
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