Adelaide City councillors are looking to block a South Australian Government plan to build a 250-room hotel at Lot Fourteen, saying the council must “rule this out now”.
The old Royal Adelaide Hospital is being redeveloped into high tech commercial hub Lot Fourteen, with the government planning to build “short-stay temporary accommodation” at the site.
The latest development plan submitted by Planning Minister Stephan Knoll suggests rezoning the site to allow “licensed premises in association with hotel, restaurant, shop or the like”.
“The overnight visitor population, when supply meets demand, is almost equal to the residential population, with the area having a hotel guest capacity of approximately 1052,” the plan states.
“Re-zoning the site to mixed use provides the opportunity to establish new businesses at the site that will add value to the cultural facilities that are established, such as restaurants or a hotel.”
But at the most recent City Council committee meeting, all elected members informally voted to “oppose the lease of any part of the (Lot Fourteen) site for an hotel to host events or offer accommodation”.
A hotel at Lot Fourteen would be located on the park lands and would be exempt from paying council rates.
North ward councillor Phil Martin said “we need to rule this out now”, arguing that a hotel at Lot Fourteen would compete with other businesses in the city that are required to pay council rates, creating an unfair competitive advantage.
Deputy Lord Mayor Houssam Abiad said there was no clear need for a hotel at Lot Fourteen given the healthy pipeline of new hotels in the area already built or set to be built.
“The biggest issue for me… is Government should not be providing incentives and interfering in the market when the demand and the supply is there,” he told InDaily.