Birmingham City Council’s planning committee have today REFUSED permission for Aldi to build a new discount supermarket on Bristol Road South in Longbridge (Thursday 2nd August).
The plans received widespread support from local residents, although there were some objections, especially from local businesses. The application received 165 letters of support and 19 letters of objection.
However, a report from city planning officer suggested that the proposal should be refused as it goes against national and local planning policies.
Firstly, the site is identified as a Regional Investment Site in the Longbridge Action Plan and the Birmingham Development Plan. As such it is intended for manufacturing or industry jobs, and policy does not deem a food retail store appropriate.
The city planner’s report also notes that a site for a discount supermarket has already been approved for Longbridge town centre, next to the Smyths toy store. This would support current planning policies which suggest developments such as the Aldi store should be in or close to town centre locations, rather than out of town.
Planning committee supported the planning officer’s recommendations and the application was refused.
Before his election, Cllr Adrian Delaney (Con, Rubery & Rednal) was broadly supportive of the proposal.
He said: “It is a great pity that this application has been refused. In my view it was the best location for the new Aldi store. This plot has been empty for many years, it is a target for flytipping, anti social behaviour and is an eyesore.
“The new store would have created 45 jobs for local people. Aldi also offers excellent value for shoppers, especially those on a tight budget. Local residents would no longer have to travel to Northfield or Bromsgrove to shop at Aldi.
“It is my view that the City Council Planners have made a mistake by refusing this application.”