Sainsbury’s to get a new access and exit point at its March store
- Credit: Archant
Sainsbury’s has won approval to build a new access and exit point at the March centre store to help ease traffic jams.
The new junction will be opposite the Conservative Club.
Seven businesses along with seven householders objected to the scheme fearing it would cause more congestion.
They urged for the roadside parking lost when teh access is built to be replaced with designated parking areas within the supermarket car park.
The Conservative Club called for councillors to vote against the plan saying the club had been in town for 115 years and could not afford to lose user parking space for the benefit of a shop.
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But councillors were in the majority in approving it with just two members voting against it.
Mayor Kit Owen said: “Does anyone remember Sainsbury’s first Christmas in 1996 when it took up to four hours to get out of that car park.
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“We still get horrendous hold-ups on occasion at weekends and Christmas.
“March Town Council has seen the need for this for some considerable time. It needs to go ahead.”
Alex Woolnough, of Cambridgeshire County Council Highways office, said there had been a number of accidents, which although not all to do with the supermarket junction, it would mean taking vehicle movements away from that area which he said: “can only be a good thing.”
Councillor Bernard Keane said of the scheme: “Creek Road is horrendous. It’s ghastly. You’ve got traffic day and night trying to find a parking spot. It’s a dead loss.”
An exit from the store onto Creek Road has been approved previously but the time consent has lapsed.
A spokesman from the Conservative Club said there were a high number of people arriving and departing and because there were double yellow lines outside the club it was important the area opposite was kept clear.
A new access and exit opposite would mean that while dropping customers off the road would become partially blocked.
Fenland District Council planning officers said there were no highway safety issues and there were plenty of unrestricted kerb side and public car parks within reasonable walking distance of the location.