Backpacker hostel plan angers locals

ANGRY residents in a Glasgow suburb have slammed plans to open a backpackers' hostel there.

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David Meikle told of opposition to the building being used as a hostel
David Meikle told of opposition to the building being used as a hostel

More than 180 objections have been lodged to plans to turn a former townhouse in Marywood Square, Strathbungo, into temporary accommodation for up to 24 people.

Neighbours have raised fears about anti-social behaviour, crime, noise pollution, and an increase in traffic.

According to the planning application, the owner will spend £20,000 developing the former office space into a backpackers' hostel.

Among the objections is a protest letter from Pollokshields Councillor David Meikle.

He said: "The number of objections is substantial... residents have real concerns about more people coming and going, the increase in noise, more traffic, as well as an increase in anti-social behaviour. Like many constituents, I don't understand the need for a facility like this in Strathbungo."

According to the application, the hostel management will run a "house regulation" policy, including a "lights out" at 11pm rule for dormitories.

The application also states: "We believe that the local amenity of the area will be unaffected by the proposals with regard to noise, traffic movement etc.

"Backpackers traditionally get around by public transport and this will be encouraged by the marketing information.

"It is not envisaged that excessive noise would emanate from within the premises since the scale is relatively small."

Mr Meikle said residents also want to know more about who was behind the plans.

The application states it is J N Verrico, and that Glasgow architects Grant/Murray are acting as the agent.

Mr Meikle, added: "Local people don't even know if it is a single person, or a company. Also, if the applicant is not a Strathbungo resident, will they have the best interests of the local area and local people at heart?"

The Evening Times contacted Grant/ Murray on several occasions, but no-one was available for comment.

They were also unable to put us in contact with J N Verrico.

No date has yet been set for the application to be considered by Glasgow City Council's planning applications committee.

rebecca.gray@ heraldandtimes.co.uk

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