Backlash against plans to demolish Sunderland petrol station and build new KFC, with fears raised over traffic and health

Plans to demolish a petrol station and replace it with a new drive-through fast-food outlet have sparked a backlash, with fears over traffic and health.

Proposals to demolish buildings at the Esso service station and Spar convenience store off Durham Road, close to Barnes Park, have been submitted to Sunderland City Council.

The applicant, Euro Garages Ltd, wants to create a new a KFC on the site.

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But four takeaways and the Toby carvery already sit beside the service station, and the site in question is at a busy junction.

Councillors say the proposed KFC would create serious traffic concerns in the Barnes area.

Councillor Antony Mullen, leader of the council’s Conservative Group, says the proposals would cause traffic problems, and has launched a campaign to halt the plans.

The site sits in the St Michael’s ward, close to the boundary with the Barnes ward.

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Cllr Mullen, who represents Barnes, said: "This development threatens to turn the Humbledon Hill estate into an overflow car park, given the inadequate level of parking spaces the developer proposes.

"The implications of a drive through takeaway for the local road network are also worrying.

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Cllr Antony Mullen has spoken out against the proposals.

“At peak times, queues of cars will inevitably block the single lane that other vehicles will be in to turn off Queen Alexandra Road onto Durham Road and so Hipsburn Drive and Seaforth Road would be used as a rat run for drivers wishing to avoid that.

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“That aside, I also believe the proposed development contravenes the council's policy on fast food outlets, because it is within 400m of two primary schools and should be rejected on that basis alone.”

Cllr Mullen is also against a proposal to demolish the Shell garage at the Broadway where there are plans to build a new 24-hour Asda. Both objections can be read on the council's planning portal.

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The planning application claims the development would create 50 new full-time and part-time jobs.

Councillors say the proposed KFC would create serious traffic concerns in the Barnes area.
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It reads: “The existing building is of no architectural merit and is of a dated, run down appearance. The application presents an opportunity for regeneration and to secure its replacement into something far more attractive and sustainable.

“The proposed building is contemporary and through enhancing landscaping across the site, the proposal will significantly improve the site’s appearance.”

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For more on the planning application, or to track its progress, visit Sunderland City Council’s online planning portal and search reference: 22/00399/FUL.

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