Another potential change on the High Street economic landscape on the way as a planning application to turn the ground floor of the former Victoria Hotel on the High Street/Church Street Corner into a retail unit and the upstairs area into flats has appeared on the Highland Council e-planning site. Gurnites can browse the application here.
|The Vic pictured in 2008|
Part of the supporting statement says:
"As regards to the interior of the existing building, as mentioned above, this is heavily dated / dilapidated and requires significant refurbishment to be fit for reoccupation. From the research our client has undertaken, we understand that refitting and reopening the property as a Hotel is no longer a viable business option, with limited hoteliers in the market for this size and type of property. The building has a number of physical constraints and has only ever been able to offer 5no. bedrooms. Successful hotels in the area offer substantially more bedrooms and other services such as spas / swimming pools to be viable business options e.g The golf view hotel and the Newton Hotel.
In light of the above, the applicant is seeking to convert the ground floor into a retail unit, given the position of this building in a prime location of the main retail thoroughfare. As you will see from the accompanying proposed ground floor plans, the applicant is also looking to provide a cleared, relatively open plan unit which is conducive with modern retail requirements.
For the upper floors, the applicant is proposing to convert the first and second floors into new residential accommodation. At present the majority of the upper floor accommodation along the High street is in residential use. It is intended that these new flats are accessed by ways of the existing entry points from the High Street and Church Street. As per the plans, the applicant is looking to provide 2 new 2 bedroom flats and 2 new 1 bedroom flats with the attic space above to be refurbished and left as additional storage space.
The proposed plans seek to remove the majority of the non-loadbearing partitions leaving in place the main spine wall which is assumed to be loadbearing as a natural divide of the floor plan and the stair cores. Albeit with new stairs to replace the existing stairs, as building standards will require this upgrade as part of the warrant process. The proposals seek to retain all windows as well as return some previously altered windows to the original fitment where the lower panels and casements appear to have been infilled in previous works."