Lidl had sought permission to build a new 2,209 square metre supermarket on a site behind Kerlogue Nursing Home
Lidl Ireland has been refused permission by Wexford County Council to build a second supermarket in Wexford town, at a site on the Rosslare Road at Rocksborough.
Planners have listed three reasons for their decision to turn down the application – the car park design fails to provide 20% of the area for electric vehicle recharging, a proposed connection to the public sewer is considered premature in the absence of an agreed connection with Irish Water, and the development is regarded as premature in advance of archaeological testing on the site which was identified as necessary in a council request for further information.
The local authority said it cannot be determined if the proposal can proceed as set out in the submitted plans, in the absence of test trenching and therefore, it may be contrary to proper planning.
Lidl which has a Wexford town store at Whitemill, applied for permission to build a “discount foodstore” with an overall floor space of 2,209 square metres including an off-licence on a site behind Kerlogue Nursing Home and opposite Kerlogue Manor housing estate.
The application included the construction of an access road and pedestrian access from the Rosslare Road, serving the proposed development and facilitating the future development of adjoining lands.
The developers proposed to connect a foul sewer to existing sewage infrastructure at nearby Kerlogue in the vicinity of a Protected Structure.
David Bowe of Rocklands Service Station on the Rosslare Road lodged an objection, saying the proposed site is not within walking distance of the retail core of Wexford town and it therefore constitutes an “out of town location” as defined by the retail planning guidelines.
"The proposed development will have an unacceptable impact on existing retailers located in Wexford town centre and the vitality and viability of same", he said.
Lidl submitted a Retail Impact Assessment with the application and a senior planner noted that there appeared to be capacity for the supermarket without an impact on the town centre but further assessment would be required.
He added that the provision of services and infrastructure in this area would have a positive impact if linked to future development.
The planning official said the lay-out of the design would be acceptable but changes would be required to the proposed junction.
A Natura Impact Statement was also submitted, with the planner noting that there was potential in the absence of mitigation for dust, pollution and contamination to enter the Slaney Valley SAC and Wexford Harbour SPA during construction and operation but the proposed mitigation measures appeared satisfactory and included the appointment of a project ecologist to oversee works from prior to commencement to completion.
The Council requested further information in the form of a revised Retail Impact Assessment, a change in the number of electric vehicle charging points and confirmation from Irish Water of the feasibility of water and waste water connections.
The local authority said the proposed foul drainage connection route appeared “unnecessarily circuitous and problematic” and the connection point was in fact a third party sewer with a private waste water pumping station a short distance downstream. It pointed out that this connection was not acceptable to Irish Water.
"It is also noted that the levels indicated on the proposed connection point on the adjacent private site are at odds (too deep) with those required by Irish Water under (a) recent planning application.”
Planners asked the application to submit a revised foul drainage design and layout showing a temporary connection to the public sewers at Kerlogue Manor estate directly opposite and future permanent connection to the Irish Water Distillery Road/R730 strategic sewer.
An updated Natura Impact Statement was also requested to take account of any changes resulting from the requested information.