Waitrose store plan gets the green light

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The developers behind the new Waitrose store in Milngavie are going contribute an extra £50,000 towards road and town centre upgrades in Milngavie as part of its final deal with the council.

The company, Town Centre Securities (TCS), has been given the green light to build the store on land owned by West of Scotland rugby club near the Burnbrae roundabout, following a legal agreement with East Dunbartonshire Council which was passed by councillors at a special meeting on Tuesday night.

The details include a contribution of £350,000 in total from the developer, with £190,000 of this going towards improvements to the A81 Milngavie Road corridor and £160,000 for improvements to the town centre - and it’s up to the council exactly how they spend it.

Work will also be carried out on the Burnbrae roundabout and surrounding junctions, as well as the pedestrian crossings and path through Antonine Gardens.

At the meeting Councillor Jim Gibbons said: “The community has expressed an interest in what direction that money is spent in the town centre.

“The town centre steering group, which represents traders in Milngavie precinct, would like to be involved with future discussions with the council about this.”

This was agreed by council leader Rhondda Geekie.

Councillor Ashay Ghai said: “As this development will also have an impact on Bearsden town centre I’d like an indication of the Bearsden element of any contribution.”

Councillor Eric Gotts’ amendment to the motion on the night for additional landscaping in the car park at Waitrose was agreed unanimously by councillors.

He said: “When I saw the plans I thought it looked like a bit of a concrete jungle and it needed a bit more soft landscaping, so it’s my view that we need to add this as a condition to the development.”

It’s also been agreed that building work will not start on the site until full details and specification of the replacement synthetic rugby pitch, including drainage, fencing and lighting has been submitted to,and approved in writing by the planning authority.

The Waitrose store is expected to open in 2015, bringing 180 new jobs providing secure, long term employment for local people.

Some traders have expressed fears that their business will suffer when Waitrose opens next year, however, Waotrose say their stores have a track record of bringing people into an area.