New Costa drive-through is coming to Oswestry

Plans for a new Costa drive-through have been given the green light.

How the new Costa could look
How the new Costa could look

The coffee shop is set to be built near the new Morrison’s supermarket on the former Smithfield livestock market site in Oswestry, where permission has also been granted for a McDonald’s restaurant.

Around 11 full-time equivalent jobs are expected to be created at the coffee shop when it opens.

The plans are for a single-storey shop with indoor and outdoor seating areas, a wrap-around drive through and 30 parking spaces.

It will be accessed via the existing roundabout on Smithfield Road.

How the new Costa could look

There was one objection to the application from a member of the public, who raised concerns that the new facility would take trade away from existing businesses in the town centre.

However Shropshire Council planning officers said this would not be the case.

A report by case officer Melanie Williams says: “Developments of this nature only appear at gateways to towns and cities where they have a high profile and enable drive-through facilities to be provided.

“Many of these companies have a policy of only providing them if they can have drive-through and as such prevents developing them within town centres.

“Costa Coffee has a wide range of customers including commuters, families, holiday makers.

“As such are popular with families on a journey and local families who are within walking or cycling distance and not necessarily dependent on travelling by car.

“Overall in terms of policy it is considered that in principle this is an acceptable site for such a development.

“It will provide some additional employment for the town and provide an additional facility/service.

“As it is on the edge of the town, it will not detract from the town centre and its shops and facilities there.”

A separate application for the signage associated with the new coffee shop is still yet to be determined.

The town council did not object to the main application but did object to the signage plans, saying: “The council have consistently expressed concerns regarding the excessive number of illuminated signs in this location believing them to have a negative visual impact on the area which is an important gateway into the town.

“As they are illuminated they detrimentally affect neighbouring residents’ quality of life (light pollution) and are an unnecessary distraction for motorists.

“The signage disadvantages town centre businesses who are restricted in how they can advertise their business from the highway.”

Ms Williams’ report said it did initially appear that “an unacceptable amount of advertisement [was] being sought”, but that officers are of the opinion that most of the proposed signs are acceptable as they “are small scale and would be located wholly within the site”.

Officers have however requested the proposed roof sign is removed from the plans as it “will have a negative impact on the area as a whole plus a detrimental impact on neighbouring amenity”.

The report concludes: “Overall… it is considered that the proposed development is appropriate and acceptable in this location and it will provide an additional service and facility together with an employment opportunity within the town.

“The scheme is of a scale and design that will blend with its surroundings particularly given the large commercial developments on land nearby and retail unit adjacent the site.”

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