Drum and Monkey site in Ipswich may be used for new hotel, cafe and shop
- Credit: Archant
The former Drum and Monkey pub on Princes Street is likely to be demolished and replaced by a new commercial building – possibly a cafe and shop with a hotel above.
And it has emerged that a multi-storey car park set to be built in the Princes Street area will almost certainly be on the site of the borough’s current West End Road park – in a bid to satisfy demand from both businesses in the area and rail passengers which are expected to increase substantially when new trains are introduced in three years’ time.
Much of the land in the Princes Street/Portman Road area – and the West End Road car park – is owned by Ipswich council and staff have been looking at ways of developing it over the long term.
Planning permission has already been granted for a new office block on the site of the garages opposite the new Birkett’s building currently going up on the site of the former pool centre.
However that work will not start until an occupant for the offices has been signed up.
There had been speculation that this office could be expanded to include the Drum and Monkey site – but that is now more likely to be a separate building with another use.
With several thousand office workers based in the area, council officials feel there would be a demand for a coffee shop and a small supermarket on that site. Hotel rooms and possibly a restaurant could be built on the upper floors of the new building.
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Ipswich still has a shortage of town-centre hotel rooms and a modern hotel to serve the business community and those coming to watch football in the town could be successful.
The council revealed a few weeks ago that it was looking building a new multi-storey car park either at West End Road or on part of the land it owns in Portman Road.
A spokesman said: “The West End Road site is the clear favourite because that is already very busy and we are expecting more rail passengers when the new trains come in – and some people who park in Portman Road now might be moved into that car park.”
And the council has not ruled out the possibility that in several years’ time it might be necessary to build another multi-storey car park on part of the Portman Road site if the number of offices continues to increase and demand for parking spaces rises.