Superstore plan has serious implications

I WISH to express my support for the objections raised about the position of the new Sainsbury’s superstore in Southampton Road.

I hope campaigners are successful in their attempts to protect the city from the onslaught of the developers.

However, I would like to draw the readers’ attention to the proposed siting of both an Asda superstore and an Aldi on the same stretch of the London Road.

If these developments go ahead in this largely residential area, the consequences will not be restricted to those who live in the immediate area.

The top end of London Road features three roundabouts leading into busy residential estates, one of which will be directly impacted by this development.

Additionally, there is a low railway bridge, which reduces to one lane for heavy goods and high vehicles.

Long queues already occur at these choke points at various times during the day.

The new developments would make this significantly worse, replicating the traffic chaos that besets the Southampton Road, in both directions, and as far back as the ring road.

Another Southampton Road would not be welcome. Surely an alternative site should be found, one which can allow Asda to build a bigger store with a bigger car park which would be an asset to the city and not a cause of residential pollution and traffic gridlock?

Indeed, the proposed Aldi site would be better used as an alternative petrol station, to prevent the regular holdups caused by people trying to get into the only station in this quarter of the city.

Finally, this area is a peaceful and attractive way for visitors to enter the city, but it will not be for much longer if developers have their way.

The Olympic Torch route will soon become a traffic black spot.

If your readers want to comment on these developments, they should go to the planning application page of the Wiltshire Council website.

The planners need to act on the opinions of local residents, and we all have a duty to protect the future of our beautiful city.

Angela Madden, Bishopdown Farm

AS a long term Salisbury resident and living in close proximity to the proposed Asda superstore site at Salisbury Retail Park, I feel compelled to join the Salisbury supermarket debate.

While much has been written about the proposed Sainsbury’s superstore there has been less coverage about the Asda proposal and its potential detrimental impact on Salisbury.

Local people, especially Bishopdown, Bishopdown Farm and Hampton Park residents, need to be aware that the 40,000 sq ft superstore that Asda is proposing will generate in the region of 34,000 customers per week for the store alone.

Thousands more will use the petrol station.

The massive increase in traffic as soon as the store opens its doors will quickly overwhelm the Hampton Park roundabout causing queuing in both directions in London Road (something which will be greatly exacerbated by the height restrictions on St Thomas' Bridge) and have a knock-on effect on surrounding road networks.

In fact it is very likely that Southampton Road-style gridlock will ensue.

As well as snarling up a road network that was simply never designed for this amount of traffic, the proposed superstore would make both London Road and Church Road more dangerous for children to navigate safely on their way to and from school, as frustrated drivers inevitably start to use the road through Laverstock as an alternative route, thereby increasing congestion in Church Road and potentially having a major impact on the road safety of the 1,500 or more children attending those schools.

Asda will also bring more daytime and night-time noise if the store is granted 24-hour opening, air pollution from increased vehicle emissions and an increase in litter, abandoned trolleys and other detritus that tends to lurk around the perimeter of supermarkets.

It may also adversely affect small local shops (in Bishopdown, Bishopdown Farm, Laverstock, Pitton, the Winterbournes and Winterslow) potentially causing them to close (and thereby generating more car journeys) and may also pose a threat to the twice weekly Charter Market as it will be going head-to-head on budget fruit and vegetables as well as other low price goods.

This would be potentially catastrophic as Salisbury's market is the economic lifeblood of the city, helping it to survive economic downturns and exorbitant parking fees.

We are not a huge population and we really don't need another two superstores. However, we do need to learn from past mistakes on the Southampton Road and keep Salisbury a beautiful place where people want to work, shop and visit - not somewhere unsightly with appalling traffic problems that people will learn to avoid.

Kirsty Maguire, Salisbury 

IN a short space of time London Road could have 500 new houses, potentially 1,000 cars, and the added traffic of a large Asda and smaller Aldi supermarket.

I also heard someone wanting to divert the Laverstock school traffic to the park and ride.

Please, please don't let this massive traffic problem occur.

I appreciate that a small Aldi at the eyesore Autechnique site would benefit the people of Bishopdown but surely it would be more lucrative for Asda to find a site on the Wilton/ Devizes Road side of the city where there are no shopping facilities. How nice it would be to have the proposed Asda site for leisure - tennis courts maybe - as we were promised at Bishopdown Farm originally.

I believe shopping is the number one leisure pursuit in the UK, and Salisbury is certainly joining that club.

M Finlay, Salisbury

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