South Northamptonshire Council has raised no objections to plans to build a five-storey hotel trackside at Silverstone Circuit.
The 197-room hotel would be operated by Hilton alongside the race track, which hosts the Formula One British Grand Prix.
The proposals, by Silverstone Circuit Ltd (SCL), have been given outline planning approval as part of an overall masterplan and delivers the first phase of a redevelopment of part of the circuit.
The hotel would include a reception and lobby area, a coffee shop, fitness suite and a rooftop bar and restaurant. The ground floor would be retained by SCL for hospitality purposes.
Although the hotel application is in the Aylesbury Vale district, South Northamptonshire Council has been given the chance to comment on the latest design proposals as it is close to the authority’s border, and members of its planning committee agreed yesterday (March 7) not to raise any objections.
The councillors did have concerns about the original design of the hotel, which would also include a footbridge to the Silverstone Wing.
Comments from the council said the overall design was ‘somewhat disappointing’ and ‘lacked the visual interest that was expected’.
But revised designs for the hotel, which is aiming to be open by 2020, eased some of the councillors’ concerns.
Councillor Michael Clarke said: “I think the revised design is terrific and it’s in keeping with what Formula One is all about.”
Councillor Phil Bignell added: “I didn’t like the original design, but this is a lot better. But I still feel like they’ve missed a trick.”
Meanwhile, Councillor Steven Hollowell continued to have concerns over the design, saying: “Aylesbury Vale District Council will have to decide whether this application accords with their development plan. Personally I think it’s quite an ugly structure, but I do agree with the recommendation to not raise any objections.”
The revised design is also set to take on board suggestions from Northamptonshire Police, which had objected to the proposals as it had ‘no regards for the potential of crime or terrorism’.
The force’s crime prevention design advisor is still objecting to the scheme, but it is understood that architects are working on implementing some of the police suggestions, including rotating the proposed car park by 90 degrees so that it’s not possible to drive a car directly at the building. It is also suggested that bollards are built alongside the access road. The objection is likely to be withdrawn if the suggestions are included.