Norwich Unthank Tesco set to open in the summer

Matthew SparkesA controversial Tesco store in Norwich finally looks set to be open for business by the summer - bringing to end a five year wait.Matthew Sparkes

A controversial Tesco store in Norwich finally looks set to be open for business by the summer - bringing to end a five year wait.

Tesco first applied for permission to build a store on the former Arlington petrol station site on Unthank road in 2004, but was turned down four times due to objections from the public.

It was finally granted permission early last year when a planning inspector ruled in its favour and approved plans for a shop with flats above, with certain conditions.

Tesco was asked to pay for and install a pedestrian crossing directly outside the shop, complete with belisha beacons.


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Since then no work has taken place at the site, which has become overrun with weeds, but Tesco spokesperson Carol Leslie has said that it is currently seeking quotes for installing the crossing.

She said that the company remains committed to the site, and if all goes to plan the shop will be open by the summer.

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'It's an excellent location and a good opportunity to bring a disused site back to use,' she said.

'We look forward to creating new jobs, serving local people and becoming part of the community."

"We have been working with the council with regard to the planning conditions and hopefully we can press ahead with the necessary works to the site in the next few months."

Norwich County Council said that Tesco have agreed to pay for and install the crossing, which it claims will benefit the people of the area.

Adrian Ramsay, green party councillor for the area and candidate for Norwich south MP, said that it was frustrating that the Tesco store is going to be built against the wishes of the majority of local residents.

'There are two main concerns. The store will bring a lot of extra delivery lorries to an already narrow and congested street,' he said.

'And we're concerned about the effect it will have on independent businesses in the street.'

What's your view on the Unthank Road Tesco store? Write to Evening News Letters, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE or email eveningnewsletters@archant.co.uk

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