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29-storey Vauxhall skyscraper hotel by the Thames approved

By Robert Firth, Local Democracy Reporter

A skyscraper hotel by the River Thames has been approved despite fears the area is becoming a feeder town for London tourists.

Lambeth councillors waved through plans for the 872-bed skyscraper hotel in Vauxhall at a planning meeting on November 22.

A Texaco petrol station will be bulldozed to make way for the new hotel, which will be housed in two linked 29-storey and 26-storey towers.

CGI of planned hotel next to The Rose pub on Albert Embankment (Picture: Lambeth council planning documents)

Councillor Isla Wrathmell, Labour member for Vauxhall, said the area was already well-served by large hotels and didn’t need another one.

She said: “There are already two large hotels in our ward, as well as a Travelodge and although their contribution is welcome, we do not need another one. We need affordable housing.

“We do not lack footfall in Vauxhall. We do lack for businesses that keep people spending their money in Vauxhall, and that is what development should be geared towards, rather than a hotel which will largely act as a feeder for London’s key tourist areas.”

Cllr Wrathmell, who was not a voting member of the planning committee, added that she was unsure how another large hotel geared towards international travel was compatible with Lambeth council’s climate change promises.

Vauxhall is already home to the 645-room 4-star Park Plaza Riverbank, a Travelodge, and a 3-star Best Western Plus hotel, among other hotels. There are also many more hotels around Waterloo and the South Bank, within walking distance of the area.

Stephen Chatfield from Ocubis, the applicant’s development manager, said he was not yet revealing which company would take on the hotel once built. But he added that it had been whittled down to a handful of potential operators.

He said: “We’re not going to be an ‘apart hotel’. We’re not going to be five-star. The band we’re aiming for is going to be affordable for people. It’s going to be three to four-star, mid-market point.”

The Texaco petrol station site already had planning permission for a 600-bed hotel in two linked 24-storey towers, which was granted in August 2020.

A planning committee approved the 872-room hotel unanimously.

Pictured top: CGI of planned hotel skyscraper from River Thames (Picture: Lambeth council planning documents)

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