Wednesday, April 20, 2022

News: Lidl resubmit plans for new Rotherham store

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German global discount chain, Lidl, has resubmitted plans for a new store in Rotherham.

In 2020 members of the planning board at Rotherham Council voted to refuse plans, despite them being recommended for approval by officers.

This time, applicants hope that the opening of a new Aldi nearby actually improves their chances of gaining approval.

The updated plans are very similar to those previously submitted. They are for a new 20,000 sq ft store on a site at Rotherham Road, Swallownest which would involve the demolition of the Christ Church building and, at the rear of the site, new changing rooms and a new additional sports pitch at the existing Miners Welfare Society.

Lidl wants to build a new store to the latest specification with a 13,500 sq ft sales area including a bakery, longer-style tills with dual packing and customer toilets.

40 full time and part time job opportunities would be created if proposals are approved.

The planning board voted nine to two to refuse the 2020 application. The detrimental impact on the Swallownest district centre was the main reason for refusal with councillors questioning that enough people using the Lidl would also make a link trip to the centre. Lidl's site is deemed "edge of centre" in planning terms.

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For the updated planning application, a new retail statement has been submitted. Authors, dpp Planning, assess the impact of the opening of the new Aldi at Fence in 2021, which it says is "over-trading" and has "contributed significantly to a nearly 40% reduction in trade" at the Co-op in Swallownest.

Both Aldi and the Co-op objected to the 2020 application.

The analysis states that the new Lidl is estimated divert £3.6m away from the Aldi and £0.13m from the Co-op.

The latest application adds that the over-trading of the Aldi "demonstrates a clear latent demand for additional discount retail destinations" in the area and that the Co-op is "now performing in a predominantly top-up shopping role."

Lidl's application argues that the vitality and viability of Swallownest has also been exacerbated by the lack of opportunity for linked trips to the Aldi.

Conversely, with Lidl offering to provide car parking for up to two hours in 100 spaces on the edge of Swallownest, it says that the new store "provides strong opportunities for linked trips with the existing shopping centre."

It adds: "A significant proportion of trade is expected to be diverted to the proposed development [Lidl] from the Aldi at Swallow Wood Road instead of the Co-op. It is likely that the vast majority of residents who would previously have used Co-op in Swallownest as a main food shopping destination have already been diverted to Aldi at Swallow Wood Road. We have also assumed some diversion of expenditure from other convenience floorspace in Swallownest, the only real provider being Del’s convenience store."

The retail statement concludes: "We do not consider that the proposed development, considered either in isolation or cumulatively with other commitments would be of significant detriment to the vitality and viability of the identified retail centres. In fact, we consider it presents an opportunity to retain and encourage linked trips with Swallownest District Centre in the event that the Co-op store were to close as a result of the Aldi store at Swallow Wood Road Local Centre.

"Further, the impact of the proposed development on Swallow Wood Road Local Centre would in effect "correct" the overtrading of the single Aldi store in this centre, and we consider that the two stores could trade without resulting in a significantly detrimental impact to the vitality and viability of this centre."

Lidl website

Images: Lidl

1 comments:

Anonymous,  April 21, 2022 at 9:01 AM  

Got to love Rotherham Councils priorities. They intervene in the planning permission of a supermarket, that will serve a community, but green light a massive ugly warehouse which will sit on a housing estates door step, increase the already high number of HGVs on Cumwell Lane/Bawtry Road and make an area of high pollution even worse.

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