Morrisons Superstore Granted Consent

Supermarket chain Morrisons has been confirmed as the new superstore to be developed on the site of the former Severn Trent headquarters site in Sheldon, Birmingham.

Birmingham City Council has approved detailed plans submitted on behalf of Chase Midland Estate, with the tenant confirmed as Morrisons.

As part of the planning consent, Chase Midland Estate will invest at least £450,000 in the Sheldon district, while the proposal will provide much needed jobs for local people both during the construction and in the operation of the store.

Birmingham City Council granted outline planning permission earlier in 2011 and the work by the Practice since then has seen a detailed aspects of the plans designed, including alterations to accommodate some of the concerns of local residents.

The site on the main A45 Coventry Road in Sheldon has been vacant since the water company moved its operations to Coventry. A number of major highway improvements, including the provision of a filter lane for traffic approaching from the Birmingham Airport direction, will now follow.

The pedestrian subway, which crosses Coventry Road, will have £200,000 spent on improving it. Originally, there was consideration of providing a surface level crossing but this would have led to delays for traffic using one of the city’s prime arterial routes, so the subway will be transformed instead, making it safe and much easier to negotiate.

Apart from the main supermarket building, there will be another five retail units fronting the Coventry Road together with associated warehousing, servicing and parking and staff facilities. In all there will be 513 parking spaces, some under the main store, complemented by new landscaping.

Associate Director Will Charlton, who dealt with the scheme, said: “We are very pleased to have finalised the last details of the scheme, which will boost the local economy considerably, bringing jobs and investment. It will help to kick-start the regeneration of this part of the city.”

The design of the building with its corner wings reflects the development’s proximity to Birmingham Airport and its architects hope it will exceed current building regulations standards and achieve a BREEAM (Environmental Assessment Method) target of “very good”. The measures include lower energy use, rainwater recycling and recycling of packaging.

Morrisons began life from a market stall in Bradford, West Yorkshire and is now the UK’s fourth largest supermarket chain.