PUBLIC concerns have been aired over the proposed development of a giant supermarket in Scarborough town centre.
Around 50 people attended a joint meeting between Scarborough Town’s Team and Urban Space Group in which opponents of the planned Tesco on Dean Road raised objections over the design of the store to representatives from Scarborough Council.
The meeting, which was held at the Spa Complex, was set up to discuss proposals from Tesco and Sainsbury’s. However, the Sainsbury’s store was mentioned only a handful of times as campaigners berated the Tesco store, which is expected to create 350 new jobs.
A presentation by Nick Hart from Urban Space Group revealed that Tesco had amended designs to the store following a consultation between themselves and Tesco.
Mr Hart branded the original plans “dreadful”, before showing new plans featuring improvements agreed upon by Tesco.
Suggestions had been made by Urban Space to improve the entrances in the site, as well as to improve the store’s perimeter.
The company had also agreed to surround the site with trees to improve its appearance.
Points raised by the public over the design improvements largely focused on the surrounding trees, which although welcomed as an improvement on the original plans, were still criticised due to their time taken to grow, with one observer asking “how long will people have to stare at blank walls?”
Urban Space also asked Tesco to attempt to “stamp a piece of Scarborough” on the site, with one suggestion being that the benches should be the ones used on the seafront, which Mr Hart believed were synonymous with Scarborough. It was also revealed that Tesco had set aside £50,000 for a single piece of public art for the store, a budget Mr Hart branded a “misuse of money”.
Following the presentation, the floor was thrown open for debate. One point raised was the close proximity between the planned petrol station on the site and a nearby children’s play site, which Mr Hart defended by saying Tesco were limited to where they could place it.
Long-time campaigner Syliva Burnett highlighted many people’s concerns over traffic and parking, especially as to where delivery lorries were going to park, and another resident criticised the decision to build the store in the middle of town, stating that he believed that it was “already quicker to get through London than Scarborough town centre”, and that the store would worsen the problem.
The next development in the process is expected to be North Yorkshire County Council’s highways report, which is expected in the next few weeks.