Erection of a new three pump (six filling position) Petrol Filling Station (PFS) and associated works
Officers presented the report and outlined the application for the construction of an automatic (un-manned) petrol filling station (“PFS”) on land situated parallel with Union Street and currently forming part of the Asda car park accessed from Jinnah Road.
Members were reminded that the application had been deferred by Planning Committee on 13th November 2019 for further information regarding mitigation of anti-social behaviour (ASB) and the updated report included an analysis of crime and ASB in the area provided by West Mercia Police at Appendix C.
The proposal would result in the loss of 50 car parking spaces and the PFS would only be permitted to trade during the existing trading hours of the Asda store. There would be internal changes to the layout of the car park to provide for ingress and egress of fuel delivery vehicles.
There had been no objections to the scheme from the statutory consultees including Worcestershire Highways, the petroleum safety officer with regard to safety issues or Worcestershire Regulatory Services with regard to noise, light pollution or contaminated land. There was no objection from the police in relation to ASB at the site.
At the invitation of the Chair the following speakers addressed the committee under the Council’s Public Speaking Rules:-
The first five speakers were opposed to the application. In addition to points made at the last meeting (choice of location, noise/light pollution and on-going issues with ASB), there was reference to research regarding the health impact and it was suggested that there would be poor accessibility to the site for vehicles delivering fuel.
In responding to questions from Members officers clarified that:-
· The Car Park Management Agreement relating to discharge pf conditions for the earlier Asda planning application had been received and officers would review it. However, the contents of that document were a separate matter.
· That County Highways had carried out a full analysis of the applicant’s Transport Statement, and in this regard Members were referred to the comments on page 20 of the agenda that the proposed development would not have any adverse impact on the safe operation of the highway network or the ability of retail customers to find appropriate car parking. Further, that County Highways and the Petroleum Safety Officer were satisfied that tankers would be able to access and egress the site safely without obstruction.
In debating the application the discussion focussed on whether or not there were any valid grounds for refusal, and differing opinions on this aspect were expressed. Members were reminded by officers that notwithstanding any matters raised in public speaking, there had been no objections to the scheme from any of the statutory consultees.
Councillor Fry withdrew from the meeting room for a comfort break and on his return sat in the public gallery and did not participate in the vote.
Having regard to the development plan and to all other material considerations, planning permission be granted subject to the conditions and informatives set out on pages 11 to 14 of the main agenda.
[In relation to this agenda item Councillor Brandon Clayton declared an Other Disclosable Interest in that he had had previous contact with the applicant concerning issues raised by residents. Councillor Clayton left the room during consideration of this item and took no part in the debate or vote.]
[In relation to this agenda item Councillor Andrew Fry declared an Other Disclosable Interest in that he was acquainted with one of the registered speakers as a former colleague. Councillor Fry participated in the debate but vacated the meeting room for a comfort break and did not participate in the vote].