Caister Tesco work could begin this year
WORK on a redeveloped Tesco store in a busy seaside village could begin by the end of the year.
Developers say plans to replace the old store at Caister with a larger one are just about ready for submission after five years.
David Hammond of Dalco Consultancy said the village backed the scheme but had raised concerns about increased traffic and problems pulling out of residential side streets.
But the scheme to build a new store double the size and a new community centre would signal an improvement for local motorists with new traffic lights creating gaps in the stream of vehicles, Mr Hammond said.
“The situation at Caister is that we were, in fact, virtually ready for submission before Christmas and we really just needed to tie up all the last loose ends before submitting this massive pile of documents and forms to the borough council.
“Since the Christmas break I have been pursuing things.
“It is just a question of ‘i’ dotting and ‘t’ crossing to make sure it goes through with everything in place and with no reason for delay.”
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Buckinghamshire-based Mr Hammond, who was involved in the planning applications for the original Rainbow store on the site, Lidl at the other end of the high street, and also Sainsbury in Great Yarmouth, said Tesco had been looking for some time at how it could improve the store .
“Tesco wanted something bigger but in modern terms it still won’t be that big, and nothing like the Yarmouth store. But it will be suitable for a modern, up-to-date, seaside resort where you can shop comfortably.
“It is too busy in the summer and this is a great opportunity to get everything done properly to make a nice comfortable store.”
Meanwhile the new Caister community centre will sit in the same place as the existing hall, bought by the parish council some years ago when Norfolk County Council opted out of youth centre provision.
So far 20 schemes for the store and hall had been worked up, culminating in the final effort.
Chairman of Caister Parish Council Tony Overill, said: “As far as the new village hall is concerned we signed it off last October.
“We are happy with that, now it’s all up to Tesco.”