AN angry resident has questioned Swansea’s healthy city status as councillors debated whether a new drive-thru Greggs bakery should be given the go-ahead – next to a Starbucks and McDonald’s restaurant.
The letter by Linda Summons, of Bevans Row, was read out as the council’s planning committee considered the merits of the proposed drive-thru.
Her letter said people living on Bevans Row, which is just off Fabian Way, were blighted by litter and indiscriminate parking by Starbucks and McDonald’s customers.
It said the Greggs proposal, on top of the two neighbouring outlets, was not a good advert for Swansea’s healthy city status.
“Perhaps put yourself in our shoes,” said the letter.
Ward councillors Clive Lloyd and Joe Hale spoke against the application – submitted by a company called CDP Ltd – although they said they had nothing against Greggs, which has three outlets in the city centre and one on New Cut Road.
But impact of Starbucks and McDonald’s on Bevans Row residents, said Cllr Lloyd, had been “near sheer hell”.
He added: “I would say, is this establishment really needed for this location?”
If the application was to be approved, he asked if a barrier could be installed to prevent customers using Bevans Row, or measures such as a residents’ parking scheme.
Planning consultant Matthew Gray, on behalf of CPD Ltd, said the drive-thru would not have a significant impact on the amenity of residents, and that 20 to 30 jobs would be created.
The drive-thru is to operate 24/7, but an acoustic fence is proposed between the outlet and Bevans Row.
The site was previously earmarked for a car tyre centre and two other units.
Several members of the planning committee expressed sympathy with Bevans Row residents and misgivings about the proposed Greggs.
A highways officer said he couldn’t see how the council could install a barrier to prevent customers using the residential street, but he didn’t rule out the idea of new traffic regulation orders or residents’ parking.
The planning officer report before the committee said the traffic from the tyre centre and two units would likely have been significantly higher than from the planned Greggs.
The committee voted in favour of the application, with one vote against.
The applicant must contribute £57,045 towards improvements on Fabian Way, and adhere to 14 planning conditions.