Vincenzo's under threat from new student flats

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By Imogen Horton, News Editor

The building owners, Urbina, submitted plans last month to create 16 students flats on the site, which could force Vincenzo's to close.

The plans also include a restuarant on the ground floor, currently occupied by T. M. Lewin, which Urbina have said Vincenzo's can move to.

However, the owners of the nearly 50 year old restuarant, siblings Giuseppe and Isabella Ricci have said they're 'not really happy about it'.

Giuseppe Ricci said: 'We don't know if the plans will even be granted yet but of course, the last thing we want is for the restaurant to close.

'The landlord has said we can move into the space underneath but it's all ifs and buts. This is a family-run business which has been here for 48 years and it's our livelihood.

'If we are forced to leave we will be fighting it - we won't just walk away.'

A second year Law student has described Vicenzo's as 'a cosy family restaurant that has provided generations of students with a cheap sit down Italian meal; this landmark of Park Street will be dearly missed.'

Simon Patten, a Bristol resident, is one of many to issue an objection to the new plans.

He said: 'I have been a regular customer at Vincenzo's since their very early days and, while it might not be the most attractive building from the outside, inside it is a warm, comfortable, pleasant, affordable, family- run restaurant that has been a feature of Park Street for almost 50 years.

'We already have far too much student accommodation here, we do not need any more, especially on one of the city's main shopping and eating streets. There are plenty of 'brown field' sites in Bristol, let them build there.

'No more student accomodation in central bristol!'

David Pigott, director of Urbina, said: 'Vincenzo's will be given the chance to take the ground floor space if the plans go through.

'There's significant demand for student accommodation in the city centre, particularly near the university.'

A Savill Market Report into Bristol from October 2018, concluded that Park Street is relatively underpopulated in terms of student bed spaces.

The University of Bristol has increased its student population from 20,285 in 2015/16 to 23,590 in 2016/17. This is set to grow even further with the development of the new Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus.

The full plans and objections can be viewed on Bristol City Council's website.

Featured Image: Google Maps 2018


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