One business owner is accusing the city of a double standard after council approved a six-storey hotel in a St. John's heritage zone.

The Lighthouse Project on Duckworth Street will measure 21 metres — six metres higher than regulations allow in the zone.  

Red Ochre Gallery owner Brenda McClellan said she recently applied to raise the roof on her building by only one foot and was flatly rejected by council.

Duckworth Street in St. John's

A controversial high-rise hotel/condominium development, to be built on Duckworth Street, received the green light from city council on Monday. (CBC)

McClellan is accusing the city of selectively enforcing its own rules.

"It's really unfair to treat one person one way and someone else another way," said McClellan.  

"But mainly I'm concerned for the downtown, for this heritage area, and how they can just abandon the guidelines and allow something like this to go ahead."

Construction of the hotel and neighbouring parking garage is expected to take at least two years.