A public inquiry opens today into the PRC Architects’ scheme for a 10-storey (64m) building in Guildford, Surrey.
The building, proposed between the railway station and the Town Centre, would house 267 student rooms, a new nightclub and top floor restaurant, as well a ground floor retail frontage.
Planning permission was refused on eight grounds but the main issues now before the inquiry are the design quality of the building, the impact on the character and appearance of the area, the impact on heritage assets and the location of the building in flood zones 2 and 3.
There is also a dispute with Natural England as to the correct avoidance strategy to avoid a recreational impact on a European site arising from student accommodation (as opposed to general market housing).
The inquiry is programmed to sit for nine days and hear from 11 witnesses.
Dr Ashley Bowes acts for the Appellant, Star Oyster Ltd.