Plan to relocate Tesco flies in the face of Ely Masterplan

PUBLISHED: 12:17 20 September 2012

Octagon park public exhibition at the Maltings Ely,Visitor looking at the plans.

Octagon park public exhibition at the Maltings Ely,Visitor looking at the plans.

Archant

RECENT stories carried by your paper indicate that major changes could soon happen in Ely.

East Cambridgeshire District Council spent thousands of pounds developing an Ely Masterplan. One of the fundamentals of the plan was to develop vacant and underused land in the town centre for retail expansion, something that I support.

In the masterplan the Lisle Lane area is zoned for housing but now has a large supermarket dominating the area, which at least has the advantage of being on the edge of the centre, hopefully, reinforcing footfall in the city.

The major project to relocate Tesco with various other retail uses further out of town flies in the face of the masterplan, which suggests that the land should be used for employment and DIY store-type uses.

The ambitious station gateway improvement is to be welcomed but not at the price of further undermining the viability of the current town centre, or indeed the status of the masterplan.

The council has a role in economic development but it also has a planning function. Is it going to encourage the further hollowing out of the city by consenting to out-of-town developments?

CLLR IAN ALLEN

Via e-mail

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