Plans for new Travelodge next to Portman Road stadium revealed

Plans have been put forward for a 99-bed Travelodge hotel off Russell Road in Ipswich.

Plans have been put forward for a 99-bed Travelodge hotel off Russell Road in Ipswich, in the car park near the closed down Better Gym and the former Office Outlet. - Credit: PA/Google Maps

A new Travelodge hotel could be built in Ipswich town centre just yards away from the Portman Road football stadium, after fresh plans were submitted to "modernise and refurbish" the unused site. 

The proposal would see the car park in Russell Road, next to the closed down Better Gym and Office Outlet, being redeveloped just a stones throw away from the stadium. 

Essex-based developers Burney Group, who specialise in roadside retail and trade counter schemes, submitted the plans to Ipswich Borough Council late last week. 

If approved, a 99-bed Travelodge would be built in the squared section of the car park, adjacent to Suffolk County Council's offices at Endeavour House.  

The proposed Travelodge for Ipswich's Russell Road

Elevations of what the proposed Travelodge would look like in Russell Road if plans are given the go ahead. - Credit: Dovetail Architects/Burney Group

The plans follow speculation that a Travelodge could be set to open a new budget hotel on the site of the former Drum and Monkey pub in Ipswich’s Princes Street.

In 2019, a spokesman for Travelodge said it was planning to announce a new hotel near the town centre and railway station – but could not give an exact location.

There is already a Travelodge in Duke Street, and the company also obtained planning permission for a new hotel in Ranelagh Road two years ago, but the work has never started. 

The land which has recently been acquired by the Burney Group in Russell Road, Ipswich,

The land which has recently been acquired by the Burney Group in Russell Road, Ipswich, where developers have submitted plans for a new Travelodge hotel in the square section of the car park. - Credit: Google Maps

In the fresh plans, the Burney Group states it will retain as many car parking spaces as possible, with additional space under the hotel which would provide a total of 60 spaces and four disabled bays. 

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It intends to start construction by the autumn of this year, and hopes to open 12 months later.

The square section of the car park off Russell Road, where plans have been submitted to build a five-storey Travelodge hotel.

The square section of the car park off Russell Road, where plans have been submitted to build a five-storey Travelodge hotel. - Credit: Google Maps

The Burney Group also said it has plans to submit a second application to re-clad and modernise the existing retail warehouse buildings, formerly Office Outlet and Better Gym, as well as subdividing the space to create up to five modern units.

Office Outlet - previously known as Staples - closed the doors of its Russell Road store in June of 2019 after the company fell into administration, while Better Gym closed in January of 2020 with bosses citing "operational losses".

In 2019, a planning condition barring the sale of food was removed by Ipswich Borough Council's planning committee for the Office Outlet site, with discount supermarkets Lidl and Aldi understood to be interested in occupying the space.

Office Outlet has a store at Russell Road in Ipswich. Picture: PAUL GEATER

Office Outlet has a store at Russell Road in Ipswich. Picture: PAUL GEATER - Credit: Archant

 

Daren Burney, managing director of the Burney Group, who recently acquired the land in Russell Road, said the site would be "completely refurbished and modernised" if plans are given the go ahead. 

"We won't be knocking down the warehouse, it will be sub-divided into smaller units and let to four or five retailers," explained Mr Burney.  

"The site in Russell Road sits in a nice regeneration area, but it needs some tender love and care. 

"It needs to be repositioned and modernised to create investment and employment opportunities for the town."

The Better Gym is Russell Road is to close due to operational losses Picture: DAVID VINCENT

The Better Gym is Russell Road is to close due to operational losses Picture: DAVID VINCENT - Credit: Archant

The Travelodge will consist of five-storeys, with the reception and a 72 seat café on the ground floor, and accommodation on the first, second, third, and fourth floors.

The building will be made up of large areas of brickwork, along with sections of blue, white and grey render. 

Ipswich Borough Council confirmed it has received the application for 2-4 Russell Road, but said it has not yet been registered so is currently unavailable to view online.

Travelodge was also approached for comment. 

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