New Peterborough retail park, decision set to be made

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A new retail park in Peterborough could soon be a reality with plans for seven new stores and two restaurants or cafés.

The go ahead for the large West Retail Park in Maskew Avenue, New England, with 536 parking spaces could come as soon as next Tuesday when the city council’s planning committee considers whether to approve the application.

If the plans are approved traffic lights will be brought in at the access point to the retail park and on the nearby Bourges Boulevard/Maskew Avenue junction to control the flow of traffic, while a pedestrian crossing would be installed near the entrance to the site.

Applicants FKG Limited want the units to be filled by stores selling bulky goods such as furniture.

Maskew Avenue is already home to the Boulevard and Maskew retail parks which contain large retailers such as Argos, B&Q and Carpetright.

The proposed new development site is close to the roundabout on Bourges Boulevard and was previously a Royal Mail distribution centre.

Plans put forward by Land Securities for a large new Tesco on the vacant land, which were expected to create 360 new jobs, were approved by the council’s planning committee in 2012 but the development has never taken place.

Council leader Cllr John Holdich welcomed the proposed development and plans to control the traffic. He said: “It’s good news. It’s part of the confidence businesses have to come here and it gives customers greater variety and attracts more people to Peterborough.

“Those of us that use that area know it’s very busy now to get out of, but this is an opportunity to sort that out - it’s win-win.”

A report by the council’s planning department recommends that the application be approved by councillors with the condition that development begins inside three years.

The report also concludes that there would not be any “significant adverse impacts” on district centres in Peterborough (such as ones in Orton and Bretton) or the city centre as a result of the new retail park.

A planning statement submitted to the council on behalf of FKG Limited by MDAssociates stated: “The proposed retail units are intended for bulky goods retailers who predominantly sell furniture, home furnishings and home electrical appliances.

“These retailers have a preference to locate together at a single destination in order to benefit from customers wishing to compare products in this home sector.”