Planners have decided to give the go-ahead for an ambitious Skegness tourist attraction, despite concerns about its size from the town council.
Members of East Lindsey District Council gave the go-ahead for the amended plans for the Sky Pier attraction which will mean it will be five storeys high.
The new leisure complex submitted by Taj Bola is set to include a number of bars, a tearoom, some sort of museum experience, and an observation deck.
The Sky Pier, which is already partially built due to an existing planning permission, is on the former Fat Louis site, which was destroyed by fire more than 10 years ago.
Skegness Town Council had objected to the plan, saying it would have a detrimental effect on the foreshore amenities.
In a submission to the committee, which met last Thursday, the town council spoke of concerns about loss of light and overshadowing of Compass Gardens, the outdoor swimming pool and other neighbouring public amenity spaces.
“The proposed height of the building is deemed overbearing and out of scale compared with existing development in the vicinity,” it said.
The owners of the neighbouring Lucky Strike business also objected, stating that the proposed final height would be four metres higher than their own building, and seven metres higher than other adjacent structures.
They said it would create “an incongruous structure not in keeping with street scene”.
In the report to the committee, planning officer J. Baker says the scheme is higher than the previously approved scheme, and would be 20.7 metres on Grand Parade.
The report states it would be seen from a considerable distance away, but the provision of glazed walls will help to ‘reduce the bulk of the building and will reflect the surrounding landscape to result in an interesting addition to the street scene’.
“The site forms an important role in the development of the seafront of Skegness and is an important site in terms of regeneration of the town,” Mrs Baker’s report goes on.
“The proposed building is large and will be a dominant feature in the street scene. But, on balance, the building will not appear adversely out of character with the street.
“It is considered that the proposal will not result in an adverse impact on neighbouring properties.”
Backing the scheme, Cllr Danny Brooks said: “I think it’s about time we had something grand on Grand Parade. I think something a bit special is what’s needed.
Cllr Dick Edington agreed, saying: “I think its important we encourage private enterprise to invest and if we can get a locally based company to do that we do need to encourage business.
“That’s going to be the future for the town.”
Cllr Sid Dennis was incredulous that his colleagues on Skegness Town Council had objected to the plan.
“I wasn’t at the meeting of Skegness Town Council planning committee, and I don’t know what they were on that evening. Whatever they were on, I’m pleased I wasn’t there,” he said.
Cllr Helen Matthews added her support, saying: “It’s a really good stylish design.
“I love the viewing platform at the top.”
But committee chairman Cllr Neil Cooper said: “I think it somewhat dominates the building at the side of it.”