Posts Tagged ‘Starbucks’

[Letter] What are they doing to our town centre?

Posted on Wednesday 4th March 2020 at 3:06 pm by SH (Editor)

Inset: Cllr Roger Avenin, district and town councillor for Bradley Stoke South ward.

No doubt there are people who believe that chicken nuggets and fries or a grease-soaked burger are the epitome of a succulent wholesome meal, but to many others, this is pure anathema.

So how did such a down-market development such as McDonald’s and Starbucks come to be foisted upon our town?

The decision arrived at by the planning inspector appears to have been taken without any regard whatsoever for the local residents. Virtually all the objections raised i.e. the negative effects on nearby residents such as noise, litter, possible air pollution, anti social behaviour etc. seem to have been imperiously disregarded on the basis of little or no evidence. Likewise other concerns such as traffic problems, location close to schools, potential child obesity, car parking availability etc. were seemingly dismissed with a wave of the hand.

When the chickens come home to roost (no pun intended) the name of planning inspector F. Moss will live long in the memory of local residents.

However, this decision cannot be viewed in isolation without examining the role of the South Gloucestershire planning department. Right from the outset, the planning department sought to promote this application through meetings with the applicants, allegedly ignoring the views of local residents.

When this application came before the various planning committees, the council fought hard to get this through, but after the application was refused by both committees, the council was then duty-bound to defend the refusal decision. This they arguably did, but in my view only in a half-hearted manner.

More: "South Gloucestershire Council has failed local residents" »

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Councillors overruled: McDonald’s and Starbucks drive-throughs allowed on appeal

Posted on Wednesday 26th February 2020 at 2:27 pm by SH (Editor)

Photo of a typical of two-storey McDonald's restaurant with drive-through.

Editor’s note: This article, first published in our February magazine, is an extended version of an earlier website article that was published on 16th January 2020 (the day the planning inspector’s report was released).

Bradley Stoke looks set to get two new drive-through and sit-in fast food restaurants after a planning inspector allowed an appeal against South Gloucestershire Council’s decision to refuse permission for development at the town’s Willow Brook shopping centre.

The inspector’s decision means that ‘full’ permission has been granted for a two-storey McDonald’s restaurant and a single-storey Starbucks coffee shop, both to be located on the northern edge of the centre’s car park, approximately where the Waves hand car wash is currently positioned.

No restrictions have been placed on the trading hours of the two units, leaving open the possibility of 24-hour operation.

Once implemented, the development will result in a net loss of 80 parking bays within the shopping centre’s car park.

‘Outline’ permission has also been granted for two extra units to be added on the end of the centre’s existing ‘retail terrace’ (i.e. beyond the Poundstretcher store) and an associated reconfiguration of the car park and access road.

The application was strongly opposed by local residents in Wheatfield Drive and Dewfalls Drive, where the closest residential property is just 22m away from the proposed Starbucks outlet.

Bradley Stoke Town Council also registered an objection to the scheme following a unanimous vote at its Planning Committee. The application was subsequently rejected by two different planning committees at South Gloucestershire Council before being taken to appeal by the owners of the Willow Brook Centre.

More: "No substantive evidence" for "harm to living conditions" »

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Permission granted for McDonald’s and Starbucks drive-throughs at Willow Brook

Posted on Thursday 16th January 2020 at 7:00 pm by SH (Editor)

Willow Brook Centre: Appeal allowed; planning permission granted.

Bradley Stoke looks set to get two new drive-through and sit-in fast food restaurants after a planning inspector allowed an appeal against South Gloucestershire Council’s decision to refuse permission for development at the town’s Willow Brook shopping centre.

The inspector’s decision means that ‘full’ permission has been granted for a two-storey McDonald’s restaurant and a single-storey Starbucks coffee shop, both to be located on the northern edge of the centre’s car park, approximately where the Waves hand car wash is currently positioned.

‘Outline’ permission has also been granted for two extra units to be added on the end of the centre’s existing ‘retail terrace’ (i.e. beyond the Poundstretcher store) and an associated reconfiguration of the car park and access road.

The application was strongly opposed by local residents in Wheatfield Drive and Dewfalls Drive, where the closest residential property is just 22m away from the proposed Starbucks outlet.

Bradley Stoke Town Council also registered an objection to the scheme following a unanimous vote at its Planning Committee. The application was subsequently rejected by two different planning committees at South Gloucestershire Council before being taken to appeal by the owners of the Willow Brook Centre.

Alongside the perceived impact on residential amenity, the local authority’s grounds for refusal were that the development was contrary to national planning policy because it “fails to promote the economic, social and environmental character of the area”.

The planning inspector’s seven-page report concludes:

“Whilst I understand the apprehension of local residents, there is no substantive evidence to justify the dismissal of the appeal on the grounds of harm to living conditions or any other grounds that have been raised. For these reasons I conclude that the appeal should be allowed.”

We’ll have more information about the decision and feedback from interested parties in our February magazine, delivered 1st/2nd February.

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Parties submit cases in McDonald’s appeal

Posted on Friday 4th October 2019 at 8:34 am by SH (Editor)

Willow Brook Centre: Planning appeal in progress.

The parties involved in the Willow Brook Centre’s appeal against a decision to refuse planning permission for additional development at the town centre site have been making their final written submissions to the Planning Inspectorate.

The centre wants to build two new drive-through food and drink units (foreseen to be occupied by McDonald’s and Starbucks) and is also seeking outline permission to add two new units to the existing retail terrace (beyond Poundstretcher), with an associated reconfiguration of the car park.

The proposals have proved controversial because of the proximity of the drive-through units to residential properties in Wheatfield Drive, with the single-storey Starbucks being just 22m away from the nearest dwelling. The adjacent two-storey McDonald’s building would be 50m distant.

The centre has taken the case to appeal after two different planning committees at South Gloucestershire Council refused permission on the grounds that allowing it would result in “a harmful concentration of food and drink uses resulting in a prejudicial impact on residential amenity due to noise, general disturbance, fumes, smells, and late night activity”. It was also ruled that the proposals “fail to promote the economic, social and environmental character of the area”.

Following on from the submission of the appellant’s ‘statement of case’ (reported in a previous article), an ‘appeal statement’ has now been submitted by consultants acting on behalf of the council.

The two parties have also agreed a ‘statement of common ground’, which confirms that the reasons for refusal relate only to the two proposed food and drink units, i.e. the proposed retail terrace expansion is acceptable to the council.

In the statement, the council confirms that the general principle of building two drive-through food and drinks units at some location within the town centre site is acceptable. It is also agreed that proximity to schools does not relate to any aspect of the reasons for refusal.

The parties are also agreed that “the proposals would not be harmful based on the number and distribution of food and drink units at the Willow Brook Centre or wider area of Bradley Stoke”.

More: Proposals "break the consolidated form of the shopping centre" »

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