RPS secured outline planning permission in June 2016 for a major new retail and leisure development situated at Junction 9 of the M5 on a 48 acre site, comprising a factory outlet centre 17,545m2 and accompanying garden centre of 15,696m2. The scheme was approved by Tewkesbury Borough Council following a decision by the National Planning Casework Unit not to ‘call in’ the application.
RPS led the planning process, co-ordinating a large team of consultants, and negotiating with Local Planning Authority officers and interested parties to address concerns. RPS also produced the Retail Assessment in support of the planning application, which included a detailed Retail Impact Assessment and a sequential sites assessment of around 30 sites in various centres within the 60 minute catchment area of the development. A number of sensitivity assessments were also undertaken to satisfy two sets of council appointed retail consultants.
The retail outlet centre and garden centre will lead to the creation of up to 1,000 jobs on completion. A further 175 jobs are estimated to be provided during the construction phase.
The scheme includes parking for up to 2,000 cars, extensive landscaping and amenity areas. A tourist information point promoting the attractions of Tewkesbury will also be provided. A comprehensive S106 was agreed in order to mitigate any perceived impact on Tewkesbury Town Centre.
RPS also appeared at the Gloucester, Cheltenham and Tewkesbury Joint Core Strategy Examination on behalf of the client. This resulted in the site being successfully allocated for retail and employment uses in the emerging development plan.