Sunday 18 August 2019

Drive thru is given green light in face of opposition

By Fintan Lambe

A group of takeaway owners in Gorey has failed in its efforts to prevent a drive-thru restaurant being developed along the Paul Funge Boulevard at Ramstown, close to the new Tesco Extra store.

The Gorey takeaway owners including: Tommy Doran of Maloccas; Reno Vecchio of King Cod; Catherine Dinardi of Dinardis; and John Brennan of Fat Kats, lodged an appeal with An Bord Pleanála against Wexford County Council's decision to grant permission to Anthony Neville for a service station with a drive-thru restaurant incorporating a service station shop.

The take-away owners appealed the decision on a number of grounds, saying that its proximity to the Tesco development would take away from the town's core retail area.

They said that the application doesn't specify the operator of the drive-thru, which they said is 'a serious omission.' They said, for instance, the site fulfils all of the stated criteria for McDonald's operating a drive-through take-away. Architect Liam Madden from Longford also objected, branding the design as 'banal' or yellow pack.'

Despite a recommendation from its own inspector that the proposal be refused, An Bord Pleanála decided that the drive-thru and service station close to the inner relief road, can be built.

However, the board refused an application by Anthony Neville for a 3,400 sq.m. retail development in two blocks, also on the vacant site at Ramstown, close to Gorey Shopping Centre and Tesco. The board said that the retail blocks would have an adverse impact on the vitality and viability of the existing town centre, and it would, therefore, be contrary to the Retail Planning Guidelines 2012. It also felt the design would 'seriously injure' the visual amenity of the area.

Wexford People

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