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How Aldi is defending its controversial Great Barr store

The company hit back after city planning officers concluded the store, to be sited in Old Horns Crescent, should not go ahead

Plan for new Aldi store on Queslett Road, Great Barr

Supermarket giant Aldi has defended its plan to build a new store in Great Barr saying it will create jobs and cut anti-social behaviour.

The company hit back after city planning officers concluded the store, to be sited in Old Horns Crescent, should not go ahead because it is poorly designed, would cause the loss of trees and could create traffic problems.

But Aldi has highlighted the benefits of their shop, earmarked for the site next to the giant Asda Queslett superstore.

An Aldi spokesman said; “We are disappointed that our proposals for a multi-million pound investment into the Great Barr economy, which would create around 40 permanent jobs, have been recommended for refusal.

“The vast majority of local residents who attended our public exhibition supported our plans, specifically highlighting that a new Aldi store would improve local shopping choice, create jobs and clean up the existing site.

“The Old Horns Crescent site has been vacant for some time and currently attracts anti-social behaviour in the form of vandalism, fly tipping and substance abuse.

“The brownfield site can only be regenerated through significant investment such as a new food store.”

Last year Aldi withdrew an earlier planning application for the site after a similar damning verdict from planning officers. But this time the company is preparing to defend their proposal when the council’s planning committee to decide the application on Thursday, February 16.

The spokesman added: “We look forward to addressing these points further and reminding councillors of the very significant benefits this proposal will bring when the application is considered at the Planning Committee.”

The shop would be built on land which mostly used to be a former depot for the landfill site which has now been converted into the Queslett Nature Reserve. But the remainder of the site is woodland and council planning officers argue development of this part is unacceptable.

Residents have been divided over the plan, and while Aldi says most of those who attended a public exhibition were supportive, more than 270 people have signed petitions against it. They argue the traffic congestion at the Old Horns Roundabout is already bad enough without an extra store being built.

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