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Cambridge Park Street aparthotel development will include bee hotel

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A planning application has been made to redevelop the Park Street car park site into an aparthotel – which is set to include a bee hotel and green roof.

The application was submitted on Tuesday (August 13) by Cambridge Investment Partnership (CIP) and Marick Real Estate Ltd.

It sets out plans for the construction of a premium aparthotel of more than 200 rooms above a basement car park, which will remain in the council’s car parks portfolio. The car park will have 225 public parking spaces, and will offer electric vehicle charging with 26 live charging points when it reopens. There will also be 270 covered cycle spaces, including provision for cargo bikes on the ground floor.

Artist's illustration of planned Park Street apart hotel (15320571)
Artist's illustration of planned Park Street apart hotel (15320571)

In addition, the design proposals submitted as part of the planning application will improve the accessibility and appearance of the existing Jordan’s Yard by opening the space up into a public courtyard with a café, a seating area and attractive landscaping. To encourage biodiversity, insect towers, a green roof for the hotel, bird boxes and a bee hotel are planned.

Cllr Lewis Herbert, leader of Cambridge City Council, said the development would “generate a receipt of at least £10m which the council intends to use in a future housing and affordable housing investment”.

Green wall with bee hotel (15321091)
Green wall with bee hotel (15321091)

The plans are likely to face opposition from nearby businesses concerned about the loss of trade during the years of work.

Fiona Bryant, strategic director of planning at the city council, said: "The Bee Hotel will be included as part of the green wall in the New Jordan’s Yard. The green wall will provide the opportunity to increase the bio-diversity of the site as well include species to attract bees. The concept has been taken from the idea of a bee pit stop designed by Matt Childs and promoted at Kings Cross Station spring 2019.The precise species list will be developed with the consultant ecologist taking due regard of the ecology and aspect of the wall."

Artist's illustration of planned Park Street apart hotel (15320573)
Artist's illustration of planned Park Street apart hotel (15320573)

In order to maximise the amount of space given to providing cycle spaces at ground level, public toilets will not be provided within the new car park.

Instead, the council will look to improve public toilet provision in this very popular part of the city. Proposals include incorporating additional Changing Places provision at the existing Quayside public toilet facility and working with businesses to establish a Cambridge Community Toilet Scheme, where participating shops, restaurants and bars would allow free public access to their toilets during trading hours.

In shaping the planning application, CIP and Marick Real Estate have consulted local residents, businesses, stakeholders and interest groups.

Artist's illustration of planned Park Street apart hotel (15320575)
Artist's illustration of planned Park Street apart hotel (15320575)

A public exhibition was held in May and feedback received, particularly on cycle parking provision and the type of cycle storage, has helped to shape the design proposals which are part of the planning application that was submitted today.

Marcus Boret of Marick Real Estate, said: “We are working closely with Cambridge City Council and Cambridge Investment Partnership, statutory consultees, neighbours and the public liaison group to plan the delivery of this exemplar scheme and balance the minimum of disruption in the most expedient manner.

“In parallel with the planning activities, we will continue to develop and refine our detailed construction design solutions with our professional designers and main contractor.”

Formal consultation by the Planning service will begin shortly, with an extended response time being provided to take account of the summer holidays.

A decision on the proposals, following consideration of the application and all of the comments received, is expected later this year.

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