Thursday, 24 November 2011

Dorridge Sainsbury's decision next week

COUNCILLORS will be asked to make a decision on a Sainsbury’s plan for Dorridge next week, it has been confirmed – and a council report has recommended approval.

Dorridge - Aerial - FINAL

Click the headline or link below to read the rest of this story.

Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council’s planning committee will consider the scheme for Forest Court on Wednesday at 4.30pm. The public are welcome to attend.

A report to the committee by a council planning officer recommends members approve the plan.

The Silhillian will be tweeting live from the meeting to bring you the result as soon as it happens.

They said it would “revitalise a currently under utilised part of Dorridge local centre that is in need of regeneration”.

The committee threw out a plan for a 2,462sqm sales area store in March last year over concerns about highway safety and the store’s size.

The officer had recommended approval. The committee can approve, refuse or defer the plan.

But the latest report says the new 1,812sqm sales area scheme is “appropriate for a local centre, yet still provides for the retail needs” of the area.

There is an “apparent lack of market interest in Forest Court” and the plan would “complement” the area and “increase its attractiveness and sense of place” it said.

It said council highway engineers did not object and it “is not expected to cause unacceptable traffic impact to the surrounding area”.

The report said the 175 proposed parking spaces are “sufficient” and the scheme “in line with local and national planning policies”.

The scheme proposes an extension to the Dorridge Practice doctors’ surgery, six retail units, two kiosks, a restaurant and roof car parking with access from Avenue Road.

The store would be dug into the ground and the service yard would be enclosed.

It would open seven days a week from 8am to 10pm with deliveries between 6am and 10pm. The firm said the development will create about 200 jobs.

Sainsbury’s held an invitation only workshop and sent questionnaires to village homes last year and made public the revised scheme in February.

Station Road would be narrowed near the store and traffic calming measures put in place.

The report said the Midlands Architecture and Designed Environment architecture group gave “general support” for the plan for the 1960s centre.

None of the statutory consultees, such as council ecology officers and the police, objected to the scheme, which would open in 2013 if approved.

But 560 letters opposed the plan, including The Knowle Society, and a survey by the junior and infant schools and one backed by the Dorridge Residents Opposed to Village Superstore (DROVS) campaign group.

Key concerns were over the size of the store, the impact on other traders, the number of parking spaces and traffic.

Some pointed out that while the sales area has reduced by 26 per cent, the overall size of the store has fallen 14.7 per cent.

Another said: “Trend towards online shopping will make store unnecessary in future,
leaving a white elephant site deteriorating environment.”

One said: “No-one has to travel far to do weekly shop.”

Yet 132 letters supported the plan along with a 1,800 signature petition, thought to have been collected by the doctors’ surgery.

One said: “Store will revitalize Dorridge and attract small stores.”

Another said: “In Dorridge’s hey day there was significant loading and unloading at all times, noise pollution, insufficient parking which is not needed under this scheme.”

One comment said: “Not in Sainsbury’s interests to create a store which will have
profitability limited by customer parking.”

DROVS commissioned a barrister to examine the plans, who said it conflicted with the council’s “core strategy” blueprint of what the council should allow to be built in the borough, which has yet to be finalised.

But the planning officer said “substantial weight” cannot be given to the core strategy as it has not been finalised

Yet they said: “The proposed Sainsbury store is large for the size of centre.”

There would be “no significant” impact on Knowle, it said and “impact has not been shown to be harmful” for Dorridge.

It said of traffic: “All junctions could accommodate the forecast development traffic.

“This does not mean that there would be no queuing or delay at junctions. It means that, during the periods of assessment, the junctions could accommodate the forecasted throughput without the junction becoming saturated to a point where
vehicle queuing increases exponentially and does not clear.”

And it said of parking: “It is considered unlikely, once the travel patterns to the store had become established, that the level of car parking at the site would lead to a situation whereby there was significant queuing on highway or where it would give rise to a material highway safety issue.”

It said demand is only expected to exceed supply from 11.45am to 12.45pm on Saturday, with about 181 vehicles for 179 spaces.

Yet it said new regulations on nearby roads could stop people parking on the street and drivers could use the station overflow car park behind the nearby petrol station.

The numbers of lorries on the surrounding roads would increase by about 20 per cent as a result of the proposal, it said.

But, responding to concerns from Arden school about the safety of pupils walking to school, it said no pedestrian accidents since 2000 involved HGVs.

Note: the image on this article was changed at 5pm 24/11. The previous image was of an earlier design. The one used reflects the current proposals.

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  1. Bring it on - this decision is long overdue Dorridge has stagnated for far too long.

    I assume DROVS members will boycott the development when it goes ahead or am I just being naive?

    B Mused

  2. Smaller store supporter24 November 2011 at 09:46

    Why should DROVS "members" boycott the development? It's not as though they would have a choice of other shops locally to use? And anyway DROVS has proposed a smaller Sainsbury's store. They're not anti-Sainsbury's you know! Just pro Dorridge.

    In response, I wonder if the pro-Sainsbury's brigade will ever admit that it's just a little bit too large and imposing, IF they get the go- ahead.

  3. "If" being the operative word. The planning committee still need to have their say.

    One would expect the officer's report to recommend going ahead - they have, after all, been working closely with Sainsbury's developers to achieve this since February.

    That doesn't mean that it will!

  4. DROVS - Dorridge Residents Observe Vacant Shops (!)24 November 2011 at 15:01

    Lets hope it goes through.
    I'm really disappointed by the aggressive and patronizing tone of some of the "opposers" who I suspect are in a minority. I for one hope they do stay away from the new store as they seem like a miserable bunch!

    I was against the first store but the revised plan looks much better and I am hoping to be able to do my weekly shop locally, in a rejuvenated centre. Its not perfect but on balance I welcome the development.
    I live in one of the roads just off the development so will be directly affected.

  5. I too am in favour of the development and hope to see a thriving centre once again.

  6. Non-Dorridge resident24 November 2011 at 15:40

    To 15:01 Mr Or Mrs Observe Vacant Shops ..... oh how easy it is to mock .... if it wasn't for the "Official DROVS" you would have HAD that hideous first offering!

  7. I agree that the current proposal is better than the first offering but it is still very far from ideal.

    If they planning permission I for one will be disappointed .....but no I will shop there because no purpose would be served in not doing so.

  8. Thriving centre???? I don't think so . Merrily ringing Sainsbury's tills more like.

    Shall we take bets on how long it is before they have to "save" the village again by taking over the small units!!!!!

  9. Can someone please tell me is the dual carriage way on Station Road to be retained resulting in a refuge area when turning in and out of Poplar Road?

    When I wrote to the ward Councillor I was told it was to remain but the artist's impression above shows no central reservation.

    I am confused.

  10. Let the (super)market decide24 November 2011 at 16:08

    The store is perfectly designed to enable them to take over the smaller units.

    This Sainsbury's is here to take custom from the huge Tesco just five minutes away. It won't get smaller - only bigger.

    It's shameful that we feel that we must have so much choice on our doorsteps to the detriment of Dorridge's sense of community.

  11. This morning at 9.05am I counted 42 cars parked in the Forest Court car park. Quite a lot for a run-down shopping centre.

    Where will they all go? We only have about that number of extra spaces.

  12. Smaller store supporter24 November 2011 at 16:14

    I do hope the planning committee will see sense.

    This is a town-sized store in a place that's not a town - well, not yet (watch this space - Dorridge=Development as far as Solihull MBC is concerned.)

    As for the 200 jobs claim. Er, that's not 200 full-time equivalent roles is it. Once you subtract the automated tills, a store this size will employ as few as a dozen people - most of them on minimum wage.

    Thanks Justin!

  13. On balance its a good plan24 November 2011 at 16:31

    Despite some reservations I support the plans. I hope they go ahead. I am concerned there is insufficient parking provision - so why not make one of the Chiltern Rail car parks double storey? Seems like an obvious solution to me.

  14. in reply to "smaller store supporter"24 November 2011 at 17:04

    what it don't get is, what is so wrong with Dorridge being a small town?! Dorridge long stopped being a "village" with the development of Four Ashes, Grove Road development etc etc. Rather than turning back the clock, wouldn't it be better to have a store that actually serves what Dorridge has become? I don't want another crappy little store thank you. If I'm going to have a supermarket on my doorstep please make it big enough so I don't have to go elsewhere.

  15. Smaller store supporter24 November 2011 at 17:13

    If I'd wanted to live in a small town, I'd have bought a house in Solihull, Knowle, Coleshill, Acocks Green, Warwick, Leamington...

    I didn't want to and I still don't

    99% of people polled were in favour of something smaller.

    Is it really so strange?

  16. 17:04

    Why not also make the railway station bigger, so you can travel direct to more destinations without changing trains?

    Why not make the car park multi-storey? Get NCP to run it.

    Why not turn the doctors into a supersurgery and the pharmacy into a branch of Boots?

    Why not replace The Forest with a Weatherspoons pub and a Holiday Inn.

    Etc, etc, etc...

  17. Matthew - how helpful are these comments? Let's stick to the point.
    As for the person saying there will only be 12 part time jobs generated - where does that come from??!!
    Have to say the Silhillian has chosen particulary unpelpful graphic of the development to grace this article. The only person to see this view would be someone flying overhead.
    So 1,800 sign petition for
    1060 on the DROVS wall against
    Can assume letters for and against come from these people also
    I think the DROVS have to admit it is unusual for so many people to actively support a scheme- it is usually those opposed that make the most noise. I hope they will recognise this active support as a reflection of the will of the majority of the community
    Lets hope it goes through

  18. To 17:47 unfortunately the Dr's petition was a little misleading to some that signed. The bit about would you support a BIGGER and BETTER surgery was large print (and of course who wouldnt support this) .... the small print was about this being dependent upon Sainsbury's getting planning permission. I know quite a few individuals who signed but who wished to remove their names when they found out that it involved Sainsbury's. Unfortunately, they felt unable to do so. Of course there are also some patients' signatures from outside of the so called "catchment" area too.

    If/when this planning goes ahead, the bit about the Dr's surgery being involved will be a lasting bad smell up my nose!

  19. Should this supermarket be approved I will definitely be boycotting it and no I don't consider myself a miserable person just someone
    whose home is close by and is about to be subjected to constant noise and traffic from 6 am until 10pm every day and night of the week, let alone the construction noise and mess over the next couple of years. I feel sorry for the Forest Hotel, who on earth would want to book a function there now.
    I detest the way large companies can steamroll their way into communities all in the name of business seemingly aided and abetted by the government and the only way we can protest this sort of thing is with our wallets.

  20. Maybe the residents of lower Avenue Road, Forest Road etc should get together and claim compensation from Sainsbury's to make up for all the noise, traffic, mess, general disturbance that they are going to have to put up with should this proposal proceed. I can't think of any other new neighbour that would get away with creating such a nuisance. Might help to make up for the drop in value of the properties should they decide its all too much and leave.
    For those residents living close by it must be like waiting for a death sentence to be passed. Poor Dorridge.

  21. I am praying that the planners use common sense and reject these plans and yes i too signed the doctors petition after seeing a leaflet asking for support for a new improved surgery, i didnt see anywhere on the leaflet or the petition that it said that by signing it i was supporting the sainsburys application so how can these be relied on???

  22. I suppose the giant wall along Forest Road will look quite colourful once the graffiti artists have decorated it.

  23. The truth that none of the opposers want to hear is that the reason we need a large superstore to bail dorridge out, is because YOU (and me) didn't use the small shops enough when we had them, for them to remain viable. I bet, even now, opposers use one of the big supermarkets for most of your shopping. The hypocrisy is astounding; happy to use a big supermarket so long as its not on your patch.
    Anyway, dorridge really isn't a village anymore - it's grown far beyond that. I live very closeby and support it. If I'm going to have a supermarket on my doorstep I want to to be big enough to do my weekly shop.

  24. I think the reason the plan is for such a large supermarket is not to bail Dorridge out but Sainsbury's who paid too much for the site.

    You are correct in that many didn't use the smaller shops enough which is a shame, although I have to say shopping in a precinct which was allowed to become so rundown and so badly designed was not exactly conducive to a pleasant shopping experience. I have to say my family used the shops there until they closed their doors. Loyal to the end, you could say.
    The reason why most now probably use one of the big supermarkets is not because they want to but because they have little choice of anything else
    the advent of large supermarket shopping has seen to that and it will only get worse.
    We will continue to support the smaller shops, when we can find them, so no we won't be shopping at Sainsbury's.

  25. Bored (with this) housewife25 November 2011 at 09:12

    I don't get it - the new plans include independant shops too! Surely the best thing we can do is support the revised plans and all shop there - especially the smaller units- to ensure success. Regrettably many supermarkets sit on land for years and years; I have a real fear that could happen here. Sainsburys own the property company so could just sit on it. The revised plans look pretty good to me and we should welcome this development - especially in the current climate. As a woman I say 'better too big than too small'.

  26. For sure, the new plans do include independent units but what they will be filled with is anyone's guess. I imagine they won't be able to be businesses that need long term parking as there won't be any and it would be a brave man that set up a fruit and vegie shop next to Sainsbury's.
    Interestingly in most of Sainsbury's PR pictures the "happy shoppers" all seem to be crossing over the road from the Arden Buildings car park as they make their way to the supermarket or are they going to the doctors surgery? either way they same to be taking up parking which is currently used by Arden Buildings Patrons.
    I was always led to believe "good things came in small packages"

  27. apologies, it should of course read "either way they seem to be....... Thanks :-)

  28. Small shops don't need 'long term' parking, in fact the opposite they need short term parking that allows for the flow of customers.
    Maybe the people in the graphic are on foot - m
    People don't shop in supermarkets because they have no choice - they shop their because they are convenient and people are busy - this may have lead to the demise of small shops but that is because the consumer has made that active choice.
    There is no evidence whatsoever that the independent units will be taken over by Sainsbury's and the application for all forms of planning means they are much more likely to be rented out.
    the 'poor Forest Hotel' are not against the scheme.
    2x size of tesco knowle would still entail building work over a similar period of time.
    The petition at the surgery is very clear about the extension being dependent on Sainsbury's store and as for out of catchment - These are people who travel to dorridge for the doctors (not from that far - darley green etc)such dual purpose trips should be encouraged for obvious reasons.
    I would like to know who should have stepped in and revamped the run-down precinct so it wasn't a depressing place to shop?! Some Dorridge fairy godmother perhaps.
    Let's get real - this scheme is really a godsend - Forest Court needs this and the house prices in Dorridge are more likely to rise than fall as a result.

  29. Dorridge road resident25 November 2011 at 13:47

    I couldn't agree more with the 12:21 previous comment. Well done and well put. Thank you.,

  30. Well said 12:21.

  31. at the risk of being boring, I too agree with 12:21 and the others with similar sentiments above. I hope it goes through.

  32. having just sat in a queue of traffic crawling from Earlswood Road with queues waiting in Manor Road Arden Road, coming ofour of the Esso Station, Tesco and then sitting on Station Approach not going any where at all i sincerely hopes it doesnt, the roads cant cope with the traffic at the moment.

  33. Well having just popped in and out to Solihull at 6pm with no delays whatsoever, and the 8 lanes of stationary traffic on the M42 visible from the bridge might explain that one. Nobody is suggesting that we design roads to cope with exceptions like that, are they?

  34. 12.21 Generally the owner of a building is responsible for its upkeep i.e., in this case the landlord. They should never have been allowed to become run down in the first place. In fact the design is so horrible it should never have got past the planners either.
    I don't diasgree that Forest Court needs to go but in my opinion not with this development.

    Most of the small shops currently in Dorridge require relatively long term parking. Numerous hairdressers, tanning, nails, dentists, opticians, doctors, cafes, restaurants etc. It will be very difficult for most other small shops to compete alongside Sainsbury's. Solihull probably more than caters for other needs such as clothes etc. where the huge array of high street brands have shunted most of the independent clothes shops out of the way.

    Houses away from the development may rise in value but those directly affected will most definitely lose their appeal, in fact I know of one or two already who have made the decision to leave.

    The pedestrians in the graphics are obviously walking out of Arden Buildings car park, make of that what you will.

    Thank goodness for Farmers Markets so that we still have the opportunity to purchase products from small producers that are too small to sell through supermarket chains.
    Alternatively grow/make/preserve your own - we do.

    I actually find shopping in smaller shops time saving and far more enjoyable and I am less inclined to spend on items that are not needed and in case you are wondering we work full time have a family and not particularly wealthy.

  35. Can we stop suggesting The Forest supports this. They have maintained a respectful neutrality - understandable as they value custom from the whole community. I have it on good authority that they are not in favour of a store this large.

    Sad to see Da Santino is to close. I wonder what we'll get instead. Maybe a Nandos. More downmarket than supermarket!

  36. We had our childrens christening parties at The Frorest its a great venue but sadly lacking parking.

    I certainly wouldn't consider booking it for an event with a building site next door or risk guests not being able to park!

  37. building site issues the same whatever built on site - smaller store or even housing - non arguement.

  38. Don't think anyone will enjoy the building phase but this is not a valid reason to object to the scheme. I will still support the Forest - it has its own car park and those going to a party there would outstay the 2 hour limit in the present car park anyway so, as above pointed out, pretty irrelevant.

  39. 18.31
    Expert opinion says roads can cope - not experienced gridlock you describe in Dorridge centre - EVER - and I've lived here for 16 years.
    I live on Avenue Road and am for the scheme. It will definitely improve the area - and yes - I expect extra traffic but it is worth it to get Forest Court sorted out. We are lucky the scheme proposed is so integrated.

  40. The Forest is in favour of the scheme and has written to SMBC to say so.
    The flyer accompanying the doctor's petition DID NOT mention Sainsbury's AT ALL it was extremely misleading.
    About half of patients to Dorridge surgery come from outside Dorridge, including the majority of Hockley Heath residents who have no surgery of their own and many Dorridge residents use the two Knowle surgeries.
    Yesterday at schools end time Station Road was gridlocked from Forest Court up to the roundabout on both sides, partly due to parents parking and vans parked outside homes. It was exacerbated by a Tesco lorry, 2 buses and another large truck. Many vehicles had to mount the pavement to move the traffic along.
    This morning Bentley Heath was gridlocked due to shoppers and the Co-op lorry delivering, plus a 2 storey coach coming down Widney Lane. There was waiting on all 4 sides of the mini roundabout atthe cricket club.
    This morning there were over 30 cars parked at Forest Court car park, with only the chemist open in the precinct and people were queueing to get into Arden buildings parking spaces.

    I dont need convincing that this scheme is too big for a village - or town or whatever you want to call it - with a centre as small and restricted and residental as Dorridge.

  41. We are located just opposite the proposed sainbury's development. Our dental practice business would welcome the new sainsburys as it will really help attract more customers to the businesses in the area.

  42. Fair enough and I think most people would understand your point re business, but would you like to LIVE opposite a store this size in Dorridge?

  43. The problem with school parking needs to be addressed by the school. Parents used to park at the George and Teresa church car park for a small fee - I don't know if this arrangement has been terminated but Dorridge Infant and Junior School needs to take some responsibility here and perhaps allow parking on some of their land.
    Local businesses are for the development - see above
    Gridlock is a ridiculous term for having to wait a few moments in Bentley Heath. So a lorry was delivering to the co-op big deal!
    Anyway, delivery lorries to Sainsbury's have their own off road delivery yard.
    So now we know that the Forest Hotel is for the scheme - I wait to here who else is going to be cited as against the scheme with no evidence or coroboration whatsoever.
    Not reasonable to JUST MAKE THINGS UP!

  44. Will the meeting definitely go ahead with the proposed strike?

  45. To 16.15
    You need a better arguement than I don't want this opposite my house. Not sure you'd gain much if the DROVS got their way - still a significant sized store with lighting, parking etc but actually not as good a scheme for making the precinct overall more attractive.

  46. To 16:21 ...... I beg to differ ... I bet it you lived in the house almost opposite the proposed new service yard entrance on Station Road, you would consider this a valid argument ... and it is. Itsn't a person's home meant to be his castle?

    Please think of OTHERS in this whole argument, not just what's best for YOU!

    To 16:17 YES the meeting has been confirmed as going ahead. The Sainsbury's application will go ahead at 6pm ... there is an agenda on the SMBC and DDRA website.

  47. To 14.14 I agree with your comments, unfortunately there are none so blind as those who will not see.
    Obviously all wearing "orange tinted" glasses!

    A development of this scale is totally inappropriate for Dorridge and I am utterly amazed that a planning officer could see fit to recommending its approval. Crazy.

  48. Why should DROVS "members" boycott the development?

    Because they have done all they can to scupper it that's why. If they don't they will prove what a bunch of hypocrites they really are.

  49. In the 9/11/2011 edition of The Telegaph, Sainsbury's CEO Justin King says he wants everyone in the country to be within 10 minutes of his supermarkets.

    I wonder which local village is next.

    This article can be read on line and is also accompanied by a video presentation with Justin King for those that think this is yet another made up story.

  50. 21.16
    I will definitely be boycotting this store if it goes ahead but not because of DROVS who I don't believe have encouraged anyone to boycott but because it will completely destroy the quality of life my family and friends currently enjoy.

    From where I stand DROVS are simply fighting for what they believe is the best for the village they love and should, ( despite their great efforts to reach a compromise), the development go ahead no doubt they will support it so as to make it work lest we have yet another hideous white elephant.

    Pity DDRA didn't have the same passion and commitment.

  51. I wonder if Justin King would like a store in Harbury where he lives. If you include nearby Southam, there's a catchement of at least 11,000 people.

    That's enough to sustain a store of around 1500 sqm I'd say.

    Why should Harbury shoppers be forced to get in their cars and drive to Leamington? Think of the pollution saved if they could do their weekly shop near their homes.

  52. And off goes the meery-go-round again! Is Harbury anything like Dorridge - NO! Dorridge may have 10,000 ish residents but is a continuous conurbation with Bentley Heath and Knowle - 21,000.
    I would be very annoyed if the DDRA were fighting passionately against this scheme - they have looked at the pros and cons and listened to local opinion which is entirely correct. They have worked hard on it and been incredibly measured.

  53. DDRA said very recently - am sure Ian Spencer will tell me if I'm wrong - that they still have reservations about the parking. To my knowledge nothing has been resolved on the parking, so presumably DDRA are still concerned, they just seem unable to actually say those words.

  54. The Officer's Report covers quite a lot of detail about what arrangements have been sought on parking.

    Essentially the report says a couple of things: firstly that SMBC have investigated this thoroughly (I've spoken with the officer concerned and it is clear that a lot of effort has been put into doing their own checks and further research not just relying on the Sainsbury's submission, such as getting Sainsbury's to reveal commercial information on shopping mix) and that where there are risks of things going astray, they have got agreements out of Sainsbury's = the Grove Road/Station Road roundabout is one example, and getting Sainsbury's to fund shoppers' parking behind the Total Garage is another.

    Since January there have been quite a lot of detailed changes in response to issues raised. A good example is the re-instatement of the dual carriageway, but in a way that allows a greater volume of traffic to exit Poplar Road and improve visibility from Station Approach. They also now are going to replant 4 trees in the road to ensure that there is a proper landmark.

    Is there still a risk - surely so, but SMBC and Sainsbury's have been challenged to work on this and they have sought to address it. It is easy to demonise Sainsbury's and be cynical about their approach, but they've been pretty straight with us, and whenever they have been challenged, they have listened and reviewed. An example of that would be that SMBC did not accept that Sainsbury's had made the case for 5am deliveries and were unconvinced about 6am deliveries until Sainsbury's produced further evidence about what was going on (and they do have to be mindful that just down the road, Tesco can deliver 24 hours a day if they want, so SMBC have to be careful about being seen to be reasonable).

    So I'd say that as a Committee we are more confident that the scheme will work and while Sainsbury's may be indulging in some brinksmanship, I know that they (the real people who worked on this project who are no less human than many of our residents who work in similar corporate enterprises) genuinely believe that they have gone the extra mile and will not be inclined to do the same a third time around.

  55. Smaller store supporter28 November 2011 at 12:54

    If the parking is wrong, the plan needs to be opposed and redrawn - we can't rely on the goodwill of a £multi-million plc with ambitious growth targets. (If there is so much goodwill, Sainsbury's will be happy to get this right!)

    FACT: Sainsbury's are offering 175 spaces for a c.1800 sqm store, plus the surgery, existing shops and 6 new retail units. At their recently opened store in Bidduplh Staffs there are more than twice that number (365 spaces) for a slightly larger (2300 sqm store.)

    Ian/DDRA - forcing shoppers to use a revamped Chiltern car park is a sorry compromise.

    Sainsbury's have clearly stated that trolleys will not be able to leave the site, so you're asking patrons of the independent shops and services and the GPs surgery to walk there, whatever the weather.

    I don't imagine this will be good for business. Never mind it being unfair that Sainsbury's can't trade on terms with a giant out-of-town Tesco - what about giving other Dorridge shops a chance to compete?

  56. I have just has a good look at this artist's impression.

    Is it the idea to make the pavement along Station Approach narrower so that the parking bays can be created at right angles to the roadway?

    Taken with the intention to "stealing" the footpath running along one side of Forest Road to created a wider route between parked vehicles just emphasis the fact that these proposals are too big for the site.

  57. The problem with parking in Dorridge at present is obviously not generated by Sainsbury's. There are long standing issues. This is a chance to get parking right for the new store and rationalize parking generally. Creative ideas such as more effective use of space on Station Approach are to be welcomed. The Forset Road loss of pavement will not increase no of spaces but allow for a better traffic flow.
    Improving car-parking for commuteres by putting an extra storey on the Chiltern car-park is just common sense.
    those who are against these measures don't want solutions found to any parking concerns because they don't want the store at any cost.
    Hope it all goes through on Wednesday.

  58. Does anyone know if parking permits will be available for Forest Road. I'm extremely concerned that i won't be able to visit family members due to loss of parking (driveway only large enough for two cards) unless of course I come out of their house and move my car every hour (even on Sundays). I know it may sound selfish of me to ask, but it is a REAL concern.

  59. Smaller store supporter28 November 2011 at 18:01

    The parking will be at right angles to the road. That is the idea.

    It is worth clicking on the image at the top to view at full size in Flickr.

    Draw a line from the top of the current Chinese takeway to the first retail unit - you can see it's much, much taller. I think that gives you a good idea how much big this development will actually be.

  60. Oh dear 17:14 - "those who are against these measures don't want solutions found to any parking concerns because they don't want the store at any cost".

    This is huge, steaming nonsense.Pay attention! Even the DROVS have suggested a <1000 sqm store.

    The vast majority want a Sainsbury's, and soon - but a well planned sutiably sized one. This one isn't either, as even DDRA will admit.

    I'm hoping the cllrs take a leaf out of Alan Sugar's book and say that "with regret" they oppose the store. Then it will be third time lucky for Sainsbury's and we can all move on :)

  61. I share all the parking concerns of the above.
    The size of store and related issues prove how inappropriate it is.
    Lets hope the decision makers realise before it is too late.

  62. Taking back part/all of the pavement on the store side of Forest Road will enable parking plus two way traffic to speed down (assuming it's not too busy to speed at all) - at least now it is slowed by a narrowed carriageway and this makes it safer for pedestrians/cyclists/horse riders(yes we do get people on horseback riding through Dorridge!). This narrowed/removal of pavement will mean that either pedestrians will have to cross over twice to go from the doctors to, say the butchers or go through the store. Rather a nifty way of pushing customers in-store I'd say!!

  63. For goodness sake - now we have to look out for the horses!!!
    a road the lenght of Forest Road that allows 2 way traffic to flow does not lend itself to speeding but traffic flow will be better.
    Just such tosh!!

  64. No you don't want solutions found that allow this size store to be built. You do not want this size store even if the parking works and the traffic is not an issue. You want your sized store. Why would we want your sized store if this one and the whole integrated scheme can be made to work?! Its just a nonsense - totally illogical.

  65. Matthew,
    Move on to where??
    Stagnation, dereliction, neglect, loss of more independent shops, further failure of the village centre.
    Road to no-where it would appear.
    Hope you'll be suitably proud.

  66. Keep up the good work Matthew and no I'm not his mum!

  67. 21.23 above - well dont you want your sized store. I am not particularly prescriptive about the size, but any building which requires such wholesale changes to the road system and has to claw back parts of the surrounding roads to provide additional parking spaces appears to me to be TOO BIG! If everything was in proportion there would be no need to put parking spaces on Dorridge Road or eat into the pavement on Forest Road.

  68. Well said 16.30