Plans lodged for expansion of Alnwick supermarket with reduction in parking spaces
Plans to expand an Alnwick supermarket have met with concerns about the proposed reduction in parking.
Lidl has lodged a planning application to extend its South Road store to accommodate a new in-store bakery, freezer area, additional warehouse and sales space.
However, the proposed loss of 10 parking spaces – from 85 to 75 – to make way for the redevelopment has resulted in five objections from local residents.
Robert Wiltshire of Belvedere Terrace writes: ‘The busiest time at the car park is during school closing time round about 3pm, during which time congestion arises in the car park and in neighbouring streets due to overflow parking.
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‘These same streets serve as pedestrian routes for families and children heading home after the school day. There is a clear risk to pedestrian safety during this time.’
Darren Taylor of Aydon Gardens adds: ‘The proposed scheme provides insufficient car parking spaces to accommodate the additional thoroughfare.
"This will lead to the overspill parking in Aydon Gardens and creating obstruction. This is already apparent during school start and finishing hours when Lidl existing car park is filled with school traffic.”
Concerns have also been raised by the highways department at Northumberland County Council which has requested further information from the applicant.
Its report notes: ‘There is a disconnect between the proposed increase in traffic numbers and the proposed decrease in car parking at the site.
‘The transport assessment does not provide any justification or data in respect to how the increase in vehicle movements and therefore parking demand would be accommodated in a car park that has a reduced capacity compared to the existing layout.’
Alnwick Civic Society has also objected to the loss of parking spaces.
No objection was raised by Alnwick Town Council.
A report on Lidl’s behalf states: ‘The proposed development provides a site layout designed in accordance with current best practice to accommodate pedestrians and cyclists.
‘The recorded accident data within the vicinity does not indicate any existing highway safety patterns or problems. The traffic generated by the site would not have a detrimental impact on highway safety.
‘It is unlikely that there would be a material increase in trips to the site. The increase in sales floor area will increase product availability which could result in a decrease in trips to the store.’