Archive for 3rd October 2008

CEN article: Weight ban ‘of no use’

TESCO has told a planning inspector its Mill Road store will be useless if large lorries are banned from making deliveries.
One of the reasons Cambridge City Council rejected the supermarket’s application for a single-story extension and installation of plant equipment at the former Wilco site was that the only way of servicing the store using 10.3 metre-long rigid axle vehicles was via Mill Road, putting public safety at risk and holding up traffic.

Planning inspector David Nicholson asked Rupert Lyons, director of Pinnacle Transportation Limited, appearing for Tesco, whether the store could operate without those vehicles.

He said: “If, for example, I were to apply a condition to a permission that said no vehicles above the size of, say, a transit van, could deliver, would that permission be worth anything to you?”

Mr Lyons replied: “I don’t believe so, no sir.”

There are three options for deliveries: stopping on Mill Road; driving around a loop of Catharine Street and Sedgwick Street, or vehicles being allowed to access Sedgwick Street from Mill Road, which would require a change to traffic rules.

The inquiry heard Cambridgeshire County Council is unlikely to grant a traffic regulation order to allow access to the rear yard from Mill Road, although Tesco is willing to pay for the move if the highway authority changes its mind.

Asked how he would service the Tesco Express, Mr Lyons said the “pragmatic approach” would be for deliveries of newspapers, mail and milk to be made from Mill Road before 8.15am and the larger deliveries made to the back of the store.

In the afternoon, Tesco’s second witness Matthew Roe, director of planning at CgMs Ltd, gave evidence.

He said Tesco’s plans would provide “a valuable facility to local residents and workers by meeting convenience shopping needs”.

He said the proposed extension would have a “positive impact” on Mill Road and increase footfall as well as bringing a vacant unit back into use.

The planning appeal concludes today.

Cambridge Evening News, 3rd October 2008