Plan to replace hotel rooms with development fails

A PROPOSAL by a Killarney hotel to demolish 108 bedrooms and, instead, build shops and restaurants has been turned down by An Bord Pleanála.

Last November, Killarney Town Council granted planning permission for the development at the Quality Hotel, on the Park Road, but appeals were lodged by a number of local people, some of them prominent in business.

The developer, Hepton Developments, claimed some of the appeals were vexatious and the appellants were motivated solely by business interests, with some being involved in retail close to the hotel.

However, senior Bord Pleanála planning inspector Keith Sargeant said, while some of the appellants may have been motivated by business matters outside the scope of proper planning, relevant planning issues were presented by all appellants Bill Daly, Fidelma O’Connor, John McGuire and Mary O’Connell.

Included in the plans were four apartments, four retail units, a convenience store, two restaurants, office suites, a café, off-licence and beauty salon.

Hepton Developments claimed they were not providing a neighbourhood centre, but services for guests at the hotel.

On the other hand, the appellants claimed the area would be overdeveloped with commercial premises, would breach current zoning and lead to parking and road safety issues.

They also took issue with a submission from the National Roads Authority (NRA).

In his report, Mr Sargeant said the development would conflict with current zoning and the need to preserve a range of uses at existing neighbourhood centres. He also said the development would create traffic congestion and reduce the carrying capacity of the N22 national primary road.

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