BUDGET hotel chain easyHotel has revealed plans to expand into Yorkshire with proposals to transform a former Primark store.
SFGE Properties has submitted plans to refurbish the five-storey building in Sheffield into a 131-bed hotel with a basement gym as well as commercial space.
Primark relocated its Sheffield store earlier this year and is now based at The Moor.
EasyHotel, which has eight venue in London, is expanding across the North following openings in Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Glasgow and Edinburgh.
The Sheffield venue, which, according to the planning application, would follow a similar design to the operator’s other hotels, would be its first foray into Yorkshire.
The bedrooms would be spread across three floors, from the second level upwards, and accessed through a new entrance off High Street.
The commercial space would be contained within the lower and upper ground floor levels at first floor level and within part of the second floor, accessed directly off High Street.
The planning application states that bringing the premises back into use as a hotel would contribute to building a ‘strong, competitive economy and ensuring the vitality of town centres’.
It adds: “In terms of knock-on economic impact, the development will provide direct and indirect economic benefits within the local economy, both short term during the construction period and long term through the generation of direct employment, revenues generated by consumers at the hotel, gym and retail outlets and increased spending and demand for goods and service within the city.
“Such matters weigh in favour of the development.
“More broadly, the delivery of the mix of uses proposed in this location will enhance the existing offer in the city centre, providing visitors more freedom of choice when visiting the city for recreational purposes.
“Development of the property for the purposes proposed will provide employment opportunities for the local resident population.
“Furthermore, development of the property will make for a safer environment within the immediate townscape, improving its appearance, and encouraging more footfall and general activity at street level.”
The building is located within the Castlegate area, northeast of the city centre. The early part of the building, which fronts High Street, is designed in the Deco style and dates back to the 1930s. It is bookended by two later additions from the 1970s; one which wraps around the junction of High Street with Angel Street and the other which has been tacked on at the eastern end of the Deco part of the building.
The development comprises the first phase of a larger scheme with the second phase seeing the demolition of 51 to 57 High Street (also occupied by Primark) to deliver a residential scheme, which will be addressed as part of a separate application.