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First blow to retail park plans
2:50pm Saturday 20th October 2012 in News
SANDBACH Town Council has unanimously voted against the planned development of a retail park along the A534 bypass.
Phase one of the Old Mill Quarter development plans for a new supermarket, petrol station, garden centre, hotel, fast food outlets and office space.
Further plans propose building 650 new homes on farmland neighbouring the development.
However, after a presentation by four representatives of Muller Group, the town council agreed it would not be in the town’s best interest.
In a statement on the campaign website, a Stop Old Mill Quarter (STOP) group spokesman, said: “I was extremely disappointed in the presentation given by the Muller representatives singing the same old song about ‘edge of town’ development and completely failing to see that this is blatantly an ‘out of town’ development requiring people to walk over 800m across hills and a busy highway.
“They also completely failed to understand the traffic implications and seemed to concentrate on how bad the roads are now and they were our only hope of solving it by adding 300-plus vehicles per hour to our already congested roads with no significant improvements.”
Muller chief executive Colin Muller said: “Naturally we are disappointed that Sandbach Town Council has not recognised the economic benefits that Old Mill Quarter will bring.
“We are proposing a £40 million investment in the town, creating more than 600 jobs at all levels and the plans will help to keep people in the town to do their main food shopping – providing increased footfall and opportunities for existing businesses.
“We continue to work closely with Cheshire East’s Highways team and are confident that the improvements to the Old Mill roundabout and wider network will help to solve some of the existing problems that occur.”
Chairman of Sandbach town council’s planning committee Andrew Wood said: “Sandbach Town Council objects to the proposed Old Mill Quarter development because it believes that it would cause serious traffic problems in the area where there is already serious congestion at certain times of the day. The council is also concerned that this development would have a negative impact on the viability of the town centre.”
For more on STOP, visit stopoldmillquarter.co.uk.