Developers have submitted a revised planning application for a drive thru coffee shop in Northfield, after the first proposals were met with opposition.
Many residents and community stakeholders were concerned about plans for the location on the corner of Sir Herbert Austin Way (A38 bypass) and Vineyard Road. In particular, many voiced concerns about the close proximity of the site entrance to the pedestrian entry to the Bellfield schools, nursery and children’s centre site in Vineyard Road.
In response to comments made, developers have reanalysed the entry and exit points of the site and submitted a new application. New measures have been written into the new plan with the aim of improving safe access to the school site and alleviating issues on Vineyard Road at peak times.
A Road Safety Audit had recommended further paving and suitably placed guard rails to help corral pedestrians to the formal crossing point in Vineyard Road. Both these recommendations have been included within the updated plans.
Developers say that space will be available for parents to use when dropping off and collecting children from the schools, to alleviate the issues of parking on yellow lines in Vineyard Road at peak school times. A waiting area and access gate will be provided on the Starbucks site, so parents and children can access the schools away from the roadway.
There will also be pedestrian access to the footpath that runs beside Sainsbury’s filling station from the Starbucks site.
As part of the planning application, developers have stated that there would be no service deliveries at peak times associated with the school pick up and drop off periods.
John Liggins, Director of Ziran Land Ltd., said: “We have gone to great lengths to ensure the development addresses comments made prior to and as part of the previous submission, including design improvements, a range of measures to help the schools with peak traffic and pedestrian movements, plus confirming non 24-hour opening and delivery restrictions to avoid peak school times.
“We believe the development will provide a range of benefits, both for the local community and for the local schools in terms of parking and access arrangements to alleviate issues on Vineyard Road, and we very much look forward to delivering these benefits for local people.”
Cllr Julie Johnson (Lab Weoley), who had previously arranged a public meeting regarding the initial application, said she would be meeting with developers at the site soon.
Cllr Johnson said: “I hope to then feedback to residents and others following our public meeting earlier regarding the concerns previously raised. I’m looking forward to meeting with Starbucks to discuss their application and see the site for myself.”
Richard Burden MP (Lab, Birmingham Northfield) said: “I know that there was real concern about the initial application that Starbucks put in from both local residents and schools. Julie Johnson and I both tried to convey these to the Council’s Planning Department and to the developers themselves.
“So I am pleased that Starbucks took their plans away to have another look. Are they likely to solve the problems identified first time around? We’ll have to see about that. That is why I’ll be studying the plans carefully and it is really important that residents both have a good look at them too and again make views known to the Council”
Queries about the application can be directed to 08000 356 480