Tesco’s decision to scrap new Ely store is good news for city centre - but station gateway must still be improved
Tesco’s decision not to go ahead with a huge new store in Ely is unsurprising given the company’s current problems.
But Tesco’s decision should be good news for Ely’s city centre.
Rather than encouraging massive new stores on the edge of Ely, the councils should now focus on supporting the high street.
Research published last year by East Cambs Green Party showed the city centre has fewer independent shops and more chains than similar towns and is dominated by a narrow range of shops.
Allowing Tesco a huge new store would have risked dragging even more trade away from the high street.
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We now have a chance for a new approach based on supporting a diverse and vibrant city centre.
Tesco’s decision to stay in its existing store must not, however, delay plans to improve access to the railway station as part of the proposed station gateway development.
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Passenger numbers at Ely have risen more than 50 per cent in the last 10 years and pedestrian and cycle access need urgently to be improved.
East Cambridgeshire Green Party