If you have a story call our newsdesk on 01722 426511 or email us. To advertise call 01722 426500.
Hotel plans slammed as 'concrete carbuncle'
PLANS to build a 65-bed hotel and drive-through McDonalds in Southampton Road have been slammed by Salisbury councillors and residents.
Developer, Life Property, wants to build the Premier Inn-style hotel and fast-food restaurant on land between Tesco and the park and ride site.
They say the scheme would improve the gateway access into the city and create around 100 full and part-time jobs.
Giving a presentation at a Salisbury Area Board meeting on Thursday, architect Alan Gaskell of Mountford Pigot, said: “At the moment it’s overgrown, it’s not a very pleasant site and needs development.
“We would use materials to reflect the historical centre of Salisbury – it involves light grey cream brick and stone coloured indoor panels.
“It’s a new concept for McDonalds, being two-storeys, there are a couple of examples around, one in Andover and another in Bognor, and we will see these rolled out a lot more - it gets away completely from what we know as the standard McDonalds.”
But residents were scathing over the plans, calling the development a “concrete carbuncle”, which would “do nothing” for the approach to Salisbury.
Other concerns raised included the potential loss of trade for city centre hotels, an increase in traffic on an already congested route, its proximity to a floodplain and the unlikelihood of business people at the hotel using the park and ride to come into the city.
Councillor Paul Sample said: “It may very well create 100 jobs but it will undermine, if not destroy a hundred livelihoods for the hotel and B&B owners in the city.
“The Gothic jewel of Salisbury is the cathedral spire and if this development goes ahead, what’s the first thing people will see when they come into the city? McDonalds. I don’t want Salisbury looking like downtown Chicago.”
He called for the people of Salisbury to “rise up and act together” like those in Totnes who successfully fought against Costa Coffee’s plans to open a shop in the town’s high street.
Richard Evans, representing Life Property, said: “The presentation was part of our very early consultation process with the local community and we will now consider all of the comments that were made during the evening before coming back with a more formal plan and application.”