YOUR VIEWS COUNT
- [NW title=”Click here to fill in the questionnaire” link=”http://www.kwiksurveys.com?s=HHLNJJ_d137264″]This questionnaire[/NW] is being distributed to all households in Ashtead.
- Its purpose is to provide evidence to Mole Valley District Council of residents’ current views upon:
i). the provision of car parking in the Village centre and
ii). whether in principle the development of a smaller supermarket on the site could be acceptable.
- The results will be presented to MVDC and could have a significant impact upon the outcome.
TESCO’S PROPOSALS – THE CURRENT POSITION
Tesco has made two applications to develop the site at 53-57, The Street. Both were declined by Mole Valley District Council. Tesco appealed these decisions, resulting in a Public Inquiry. The results published on 24th August 2010 were:
- The first appeal relating to a store of 1115 square metres net retail space was dismissed.
- The second appeal relating to a store of 750 square metres net retail space was allowed, subject to conditions.
- Permission is for a supermarket on the ground floor, 9 flats on two floors above and an enlarged APMH car park for short term parking only (4 hours maximum stay).
To provide an idea of scale, Tesco Express at Craddocks Parade is 240sq. metres net retail space.
When granting permission for the second application, the Inspector set 43 conditions. Of these, the critical condition relates to the provision for long term parking:
“No development … shall commence until the District Council has confirmed in writing that it has made arrangements for the relocation of the existing 74 long stay parking spaces in the Peace Memorial Hall Car Park and that all 181 proposed parking spaces shall be short stay spaces to be retained thereafter.”
Unless this condition is met, Tesco cannot develop the store.
THE COUNCIL’S ROLE
Mole Valley District Council now has the power to determine what can happen.
If the Council has clear evidence of the community’s preferences, it will be in a far stronger position to consider an acceptable way forward.
The Leader of Mole Valley District Council, Councillor James Friend, made the following remarks to a meeting of the full Council in relation to Tesco’s planning applications:
“It is absolutely key that whatever decisions we make….. are based upon the views of our local residents and that the Council is connected closely with the views of its residents… I am absolutely adamant that this Council will work in that way.”
PARKING – THE CRITICAL ISSUE
The Inspector’s report included the following comments:
“On the basis of available evidence, the shortfall would amount to 74 parking spaces. I conclude that permission should be granted only on condition that development is not commenced until proper provision has been made for the relocation of 74 long-stay parking spaces to mitigate the problems of further on-street parking, and to ensure adequate short-stay parking for the supermarket, those attending the Peace Memorial Hall and for other users of Ashtead centre…
As the Council manages the car park, it is for the Council to find the necessary provision.”
The Council is currently undertaking a review of parking provision and availability locally to establish what, if any, options are available which could enable it to facilitate this condition being met.
At present, long stay parking spaces are provided by MVDC in the APMH (74 bays) and Grove Road (45 bays) car parks. They cater for a variety of needs including workers in the Village, users of the APMH attending longer duration functions, visitors and staff at Ashtead Hospital, where there is insufficient parking capacity.
The current peak weekday demand for long stay parking in the APMH car park is around c45-50 spaces*. Developments currently underway (7 flats at the rear of Hascombe House, 65-73 The Street) and proposed (6 flats at the rear of the Curry House) will increase the need for weekday long stay parking by c40 spaces*.
If the Tesco store in the second application were to be constructed, there will also be an additional demand for weekday long stay parking of c20 spaces* from Tesco staff.
Demand for long stay parking is thus set to increase significantly and is likely to place additional pressure upon the limited on-road parking available in the Village.
To date no appropriate alternative location or locations for long stay parking have been identified.*NOTE: Source – Analysis undertaken by SAVE and presented to the Public Inquiry
WHY COMPLETE THE QUESTIONNAIRE?
Public opinion has already played an important role in how these proposals have been viewed and the decisions made.
At the recent Public Inquiry, The Inspector commented:
“I am impressed by the volume of objections submitted by local people as individuals, and the weight and quality of evidence prepared by campaigners anxious, for various reasons, to reduce the scale of the supermarket.”
The planning system in relation to Tesco’s previous proposals is exhausted.
As residents, we now have the opportunity to express our views on what we would like to see happen.
Please take a few minutes to complete the questionnaire. A large response will give it greater credibility and influence.
HOW TO RESPOND
- Please [NW title=”Click here to fill in the questionnaire” link=”http://www.kwiksurveys.com?s=HHLNJJ_d137264″]click here complete the questionnaire online[/NW] if you can. It makes analysing the results easier.
- This can be done through our websites www.ashteadresidents.org.uk and www.saveashtead.co.uk
- Paper questionnaires can be returned to: 37 Ottways Lane, Ashtead. KT21 2PL
- THE CLOSING DATE FOR RECEIPT IS Monday 22nd November 2010
- If you wish to add further comments, please address them to email@example.com and/or to one or more of your District Councillors.