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New superstore at Taverham recommended to get green light

PUBLISHED: 11:46 03 January 2014 | UPDATED: 11:46 03 January 2014

The site of the proposed development in Taverham.

The site of the proposed development in Taverham.

Archant

A decision will be made next week on whether a supermarket complex in Taverham should get the go-ahead, with officers recommending councillors to give it the green light.

The development, on land near Taverham Nursery Centre, off Fir Covert Road, includes a proposal for a 45,000sq ft superstore, a petrol station, pub-diner, additional shop units and car parking for nearly 600 cars.

The 5.2-acre development, proposed by Scott Properties, would bring an estimated 368 jobs to the area and secure a further 153 at the Fir Covert Road garden centre, according to documents which will come before Broadland District Council’s planning committee on Wednesday.

Retail giant Morrisons has been linked with the project, although the developers have said no supermarket will be lined up until planning permission has been granted.

The district council has received 23 letters about the proposal – 18 objecting and five in support. Concerns raised include the impact on other businesses and extra traffic.

Negotiations have taken place over how to tackle the traffic fears and the agreed solution is for the applicant to provide an altered signalled junction with a left-hand filter lane from the west on Fakenham Road.

Norwich City Council has objected to the development, arguing local policies do not identify or support Fir Covert Road as a location for retail growth and that alternative sites have not been properly considered for the part of the development earmarked as a “lifestyle leisure unit”.

However, officers at Broadland District Council say the applicant is “justified in stating alternative locations are not suitable or viable because the location of this site adjacent to Taverham Nursery Centre is integral and critical to this proposal”.

Officers are recommending that councillors delegate authority to their head of planning to approve the proposal, subject to a Section 106 agreement over a travel plan and a string of conditions limiting what certain units can be used for. Councillor Nich Starling, who represents Taverham North, had requested the application be called in because of its size.

He said it was important that local people could have their say on the issue and the impact the site will have on the rest of the parish.

A decision will also be made on Wednesday over plans for a new Next superstore at Costessey.

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