Residents tell Aldi to keep the trees at new store

Residents in the Garnets and Longroyds close to former police station on Burton Road, Beeston are lobbying to ensure that Aldi don’t chop down any trees on the site.

Artists impression of new store
Artist’s impression of new proposed new store

As previously reported here on South Leeds Life, Aldi are seeking planning permission for a new store on the police station site. Residents were concerned that mature trees might be removed to make way for extra parking spaces.

Quora, the developers, have replied to residents concerns stating that they had met with the council and agreed which trees are to be kept. They also welcomed the residents’ suggestion of a community garden.

 “Whilst this is very good to hear, we are concerned about developers going back on their word when budgets get tight. We want the council to write these conditions into the planning permission.” Said one resident.

Other residents are opposed to the whole development citing problems with traffic and the economic impact on local corner shops. One complained that Aldi had ‘fiddled’ the consultation process by distributing printed letters of support with postage paid envelopes. There have been calls for the site to be left as green space or developed as social housing rather than a supermarket.

The matter will be discussed by the South & West Plans Panel of the council at a meeting next Thursday (4 December 2014).

The planning officer’s report to the meeting states that the “site is one of the few areas within the locality with mature tree planting.” A Tree Preservation Order is in place to protect them. It goes on to say “the layout of the scheme has been amended to ensure that four main groups of trees are retained – a large group to the south of the Aldi store and to the west of the stand-alone unit, which are visible from Tunstall Road, a small group adjacent to the boundary with the Tesco store, a group of trees to the eastern end of the car park fronting Burton Road and a smaller group to the eastern end of the car park fronting Tunstall Road.”

Other matters considered in the report include opening and delivery hours, traffic and the impact on local traders. The report recommends councillors defer and delegate the decision to the Chief Planning Officer.

Thursday’s meeting will also consider Asda’s application for a self service petrol station at their new Old Lane store.