The Planning Officer's Report,
October 2001

2. Main Issues

2.1 In considering the merits of the proposed development, and the comments received in response to the consultation process, it is considered that the relevant questions and issues can be summarised as follows:
(a) Will the development have any adverse impact on the local townscape and the historic waterfront buildings at the Pier Head?
(b) Is the proposed mix of residential, hotel and commercial uses in this location acceptable?
(c) Will a tall building in this location improve or detrimentally affect views of the local skyline or detract from the appearance of the historic waterfront or other prominent buildings when seen from various high points around the City?
(d) Is the overall design approach in terms of architectural merit, scale, massing and elevational treatment of the new buildings appropriate to its immediate setting and in the wider context?
(e) Is the elevational treatment of the buildings and the chosen palate of materials acceptable?
(f) Would a development of this nature and in this location, support or detract from the regeneration of the City Centre as a whole?
(g) Will the relationship of the development to King Edward Street and Old Hall Street promote a more pedestrian friendly environment and achieve better permeability through, and access to the site for pedestrians and vehicles?
(h) Is the partial demolition and retention of the remaining listed buildings at 91/95 Old Hall Street along with their incorporation into the development an acceptable way to ensure their preservation and enhancement?
(i) Will the development have any detrimental impact on its immediate neighbours in terms of environmental effects, natural light levels and visual amenity?
(j) Are there any adverse parking and traffic management issues arising from the development?

2.2 In order to consider the relative merits of the development and the issues raised, it is considered appropriate to divide the assessment into the following categories:
Environmental Factors
Architecture, Layout and design
Function and Compatibility
Treatment of Listed Buildings

3. Assessment of Environmental Factors

3.1 To help assess the environmental implications of the proposed development, the applicant has, in support of the applications, submitted a Traffic Impact Assessment, a Visual Impact Assessment and a Micro Climatic Study. The previous planning permission (99P/0353) to redevelop the site for the same combination of uses within buildings of a broadly similar scale and massing was subject to a similar range of analysis.

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