Work on the construction of a new hotel, on part of the Harbour Car Park (also known locally as the Terrace car park), Torquay, has been delayed by the need to revise the August 2019 planning permission.

Engineers have confirmed that for structural reasons a new vehicle ramp, lift and stairway, which were due to be built on the outside of Harbour Car Park, will now have to be provided within the car park.  This means that a new planning application will have to be made, to relocate the previously approved ramp, lift and stairway.

This will delay the start of demolition work, originally scheduled for the end of October 2019.

In the meantime, the Harbour Car Park will remain open but with a loss of parking spaces. Access to the car park is via the Museum Road entrance.  Diversion signs are in place to assist drivers. Pedestrians should use access points off Museum Road and The Terrace.

Motorists are advised to plan their journeys and parking to take account of the continued closure of part of Harbour Car Park.  Around 150 parking spaces will remain available at Harbour Car Park, on the top level. There are more than 410 spaces available within Fleet Walk Shopping Centre, close to shops, businesses, the Harbour and High Street, as well as alternative parking at Lower Union Lane and Union Square. 

The new planning application is expected to be submitted very shortly and, subject to planning permission, demolition work will start in the Spring - exact date to be confirmed.

The new £11m, 120 bedroom hotel was granted planning permission in August and is one of the latest projects to be taken forward from the Council’s £25m Town Centre Regeneration Fund. The demolition and construction work will be carried out by Midas Construction. It is expected to generate more than 150 direct and indirect new jobs during the construction period (which is expected to last around 18 months overall) and over 30 permanent jobs once the hotel is built.

Councillor Swithin Long, Torbay Council Cabinet Member for Economic Regeneration, Tourism and Housing, said: “We apologise to drivers for the short term disruption to local businesses and visitors but we are working with Midas to put in place a solution that both minimises disruption and maintains public safety. Although we had hoped to keep the whole car park open, this has not been possible for safety reasons.

“This new hotel will be a fantastic addition to Torbay. We are really pleased to continue to move forward with the project. But we need to resolve the structural issue we’ve encountered by relocating the previously approved ramp, lift and stairs. We’ll be doing that as quickly as possible.

“The construction work will generate around 150 direct and indirect jobs. It will provide 246 training weeks for apprentices, traineeships and new entrant trainees in key professions and trades. In addition, around 80% of subcontractors will be procured within 30 miles of the site.  This will secure around £7.7M of benefit to the local economy.”

Andy McAdam, Divisional Director of Midas Construction for Somerset, Devon and Cornwall, said: “As a regionally-based business we are delighted and very proud to be working with Torbay Council and Whitbread on this project which will deliver a new high-quality hotel for Torquay as well as contributing to Torbay’s wider economic regeneration.  We’re working closely with all partners to ensure the issue we’ve encountered, with the structural integrity of the car park, is resolved as quickly and effectively as possible.”

“We will be working closely with our project partners, local people and businesses, including through our commitment to the Considerate Constructors Scheme, to minimise any disruption during the works and maximise the economic benefit of the project to the local area.”

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