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Lidl seek permission to knock down Charleville store and replace it with a new, larger outlet


German discount giant Lidl has set in motion a plan to further expand its North Cork operations by demolishing its existing Charleville store and replacing it with a larger one.

If given the green light an application lodged with Cork County Council planners last month would see the existing 1,741 sq metre store at Rathgoggin Middle on the N20 Limerick Rd demolished.

Under the provisions of the application this would be replaced by a new 2,325 sq metre mono-pitched licenced discount store with associated infrastructural works ranging in height from one to two storeys.

The new building on the 2.1 acre site will incorporate an expanded 2,268 sq metre retail sales area incorporating an off-licence, bakery, lobby, toilets, staff facilities, offices and storage areas.

Externally, the application makes provision for a rooftop photovoltaic solar panel array, new signage, a trolley bay and parking for 115 cars and 36 cycles and motorcycles.

While the main vehicular and pedestrian entrance to the site will remain unaltered, the plan also includes a secondary pedestrian entrance from the pathway on the Limerick Road.

Council planners have set a date of July 6 for a decision on the application.

It comes shortly after the long-running saga over a plan to expand their store in Kanturk finally came to a conclusion after An Bord Pleanála ruled in favour of the development.

Last April, Lidl was given the green light by council planners to demolish their 1,762 sq metre store on the Banteer Road opened in 2008, and replace it with a new 2,962 sq metre outlet.

This was despite RGDATA, the representative body for independent Irish retailers, lodging an objection to the plan on a number of grounds.

These included concerns over zoning, the scale of the development, traffic and the impact that a larger store would have on existing retail in the town.

RGDATA subsequently appealed the councils decision to An Bord Pleanála on grounds including the size of the proposed new store, the impact it would have on existing retail in the town, zoning and scale and design of the development.

However, the appeals board upheld the original council decision, paving the way for the new store

In recent days Lidl has lodged an amendment with the council seeking permission to install a rooftop solar panel on the new building and to extend the permitted opening hours for the new store. A decision is also due on this application by July 6.