PLANS have been approved to extend the hours of a club which has sparked complaints from its student neighbours.
La Spaghettata, in Saddler Street, Durham City, has been given permission to stay open until 3.30am on Fridays and Saturdays, with drinks to be served until 3am.
However, live music in the restaurant and bar has to stop at 2am.
From Sunday to Thursday, it will close at 2.30am, half an hour later than it does now.
A decision on the application was to be made by Durham County Council’s statutory licensing sub-committee, but mediation between the business and objectors led to the withdrawal of concerns from its environmental health officers and Councillor David Stoker.
Work to reduce the noise from the building has been completed by the owner Fabio Ciampolillo, and no complaints have been made about any disturbance for a year.
Following the agreement, Giles McCourt, the lawyer acting on behalf of the venue’s owner, said: “Mr Ciampolillo is very pleased that the council have granted the application.
“It is a venue with a restaurant and a bar. People have this misconception it is a nightclub because it is open late at night.
“It is not, It is an alternative venue, really.
“Students didn’t complain on this occasion. Students are the main clients.
“He wants to work in harmony with the community and that has happened in the past 12 months because no complaints have been made about the venue.
“Significant improvements have been made to reduce the potential of noise pollution.”
Meanwhile, a proposal to build flats for students on a city site has raised concerns.
A developer is thought to be planning a 90-room block on the former Fred Henderson garage, in Ainsley Street, although no planning application has been submitted yet.
A plot in nearby Waddington Street, where an Arriva bus depot once operated, is to be turned into 20 townhouses.
Coun Nigel Martin, Liberal Democrat group leader and a ward member for Neville’s Cross, said: “You will always have a mixture of people – people who want to party hard and people who want to have a normal existence and work hard and study.
“I will be taking a very strong interest in this.
“It is the sort of area where if it is not done properly, and all the right controls aren’t in place, it could be the source of quite a lot of aggravation to residents living close by.”