Felixstowe: Too big – that’s campaigners’ verdict on new town centre superstore project
08:00 06 December 2012
CAMPAIGNERS say a new supermarket in Felixstowe town centre would be acceptable – if the developers would scale down the size.
Albourne Property has submitted plans for a two-storey 31,000 sq ft superstore on a two-acre site alongside the town’s railway station.
Residents’ action group Walton Felixstowe Community First (WFCF) believe the site off Station Approach is a better option than the suggested Walton Green Tesco development, but say the scheme is twice as big as needed and will create traffic congestion on High Road West.
“Whilst this application is on brownfield rather than greenfield and is largely within defined town centre boundaries, we feel a smaller store which met the Local Development Framework identified need to 2025 would be acceptable,” said a WFCF spokeswoman.
“It would not require as much car parking thus enabling a single storey structure which in turn would have a lesser effect on the local residents and on local traffic congestion.
“Not only is the store twice the size of the identified need, it is also a gross over-development of the site.
“The footprint of the building and the car parking completely fill the site and do not allow adequate landscaping to mitigate the physical visual impact of the structure.
“Projected takings in a store this size would equate to approximately 70 per cent of the amount spent now by Felixstowe residents on food and everyday items. It is therefore obvious that other town centre and Walton stores would suffer.”
The store would be built at the bottom of gardens in High Road West and WFCF says there would be a “significant and detrimental impact” on residents’ quality of life, with increased noise, light pollution and traffic, plus the height of the store.
People are being urged to make sure they put their views forward and write to Suffolk Coastal council as soon as possible.
Albourne Property has said an additional supermarket in Felixstowe will reduce the leakage of trade from the area.