Row over Costa Coffee drive-thru plans near Sheffield United

Sheffield Council looks likely to approve plans for a new Costa Coffee drive-thru near Sheffield United despite dozens of objections.
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If approved, a site at 443 – 447 Queens Road, Highfield – which used to be a scaffolding supplies business – will be demolished and a single storey drive-thru with 20 car parking spaces, cycle hoops and landscaping will be built in its place.

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Council officers said the planning and highways committee should grant permission at its monthly meeting next week.

43 – 447 Queens Road, Highfield43 – 447 Queens Road, Highfield
43 – 447 Queens Road, Highfield
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In a report prepared for councillors, officers said: “The scheme proposes a development at an appropriate scale and mass which sits comfortably within its street scene, and which is acceptable in land use terms.

“There will be no adverse impact on ecology, landscaping, highway safety matters, or on the amenities of the closest neighbouring properties, subject to appropriate conditions for mitigation measures/improvements.

“It is therefore recommended in this instance that planning permission is granted subject to relevant conditions.”

There were 67 representations made by members of the public – all objections – including from the Sheaf and Porter River Trust, all City ward councillors and Sheffield and Rotherham Wildlife Trust.

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The majority of respondents had no objection to the principle of redeveloping the site but they objected to the site layout not allowing for a riverside walk.

Other concerns raised included: air pollution from drive-thru traffic, that there is already lots of places to get coffee and littering.

Following negotiation, the applicant has since amended the plans to reduce the number of car parking spaces and incorporate a riverside walk.

Council officers said: “Amended plans have been received which show the introduction of a new riverside walk running alongside the Sheaf opening up this section of the river to the public. Although the walk is not proposed to be to adoptable standard, it’s presence will enable the opening up of, and connection to, a significant section of the River Sheaf Walk, and is a positive aspect of the proposal.”

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Councillors will make a decision on the plans in a committee meeting on Tuesday, May 24.