They’re back… Co-op Supermarket Planned for Pontcanna Pine site

As anticipated, despite having their proposals recommended for rejection last time and OVERWHELMING PUBLIC CRITICISM OF THE PLANS the developers have DISREGARDED LOCALS’ CONCERNS and resubmitted plans for a supermarket on the Pontcanna Pine/Dairy site.

Please attend the meeting to discuss revised scheme and decide on action:
7pm, Monday 15 October, St Catherine’s  Church Hall, Kings Road.
We will also place petitions in local shops and kindly request that you write letters again – the deadline for letters/emails is October 22 2012.

The application for a store at Pontcanna Pine/The Dairy has been submitted again as expected – pretty much the same as before, with a large retail unit on the ground floor and 8 2-bed flats in the two storeys above. There is gated parking for 10 cars – 1 for each flat, 1 for disabled customers and 1 for the store manager – NONE FOR CUSTOMERS.

The main differences are that:
• The Co-op Supermarket chain are now confirmed as the retail occupiers.
• A single yellow line is proposed outside the store on Kings Road which would allow  disabled parking and deliveries only between 8am and 6pm with unrestricted parking at other times. The extent of this has not been confirmed.

They say that by far the majority of customers will arrive on foot – DO YOU AGREE?
Or you feel that the many many cars that use Pontcanna as a cut-through, particularly at rush-hour may park (or attempt to) and shop? If you don’t please WRITE A LETTER.

To support their plans the developer has presented more parking surveys showing numbers of non-resident’s parking spaces which are free at various times on a Friday and Saturday on streets up to 350m from the proposed store. They have also monitored the numbers and transport mode of customers to another Co-op store in Cardiff- in Station Road, Llanishen. Along with comparisons with other stores, such as in Bath, they have reached the conclusion that there is adequate parking provision. They state the Coop would limit the size to 10.7m long maximum and agree a plan for deliveries with the Council.

Here is the link to the proposals if you wish to view the plans online:

or you can click here to download plans:
letter and parking and traffic data and revised Co-op Supermarket plans

Here is a visual map of main differences:



  • The proposals are virtually the same as before and all the previous objections apply [see below].
  • The data still does not address the likely increased traffic and parking on or near the junction. Customers, new flat residents and store staff will want to park here, not 200-350m away.
  • The developers’ calculations on expected parking requirements ignore the needs of the new residents [probably with two cars/flat], store staff other than the manager, and also those who currently park on Kings Road in front of the Dairy who have not been counted in the survey.

We have yet to study the traffic/parking report/issues in depth but we have noticed other  information that does not give us confidence that the report is entirely objective. For instance, they say that the ‘comparative’ Llanishen Coop store has no dedicated parking provision. They do not mention the ample customer parking for the store and surrounding parade of shops directly opposite, so the information is misleading.

We think the reasons for objection below are still valid. Please write to the Council before 22 October 2012 stating your own reasons, quoting  11/01213/DCI. The address is: Phil Williams, Development Control, Cardiff County Council, City Hall, Cardiff, CF10 3ND

Or you can simply write an email, address it to Phil Williams, quote reference 11/01213/DCI and include your name, address and reasons for objecting to:

Letters count, the council reads out the number of letters/emails received and a selection of the comments, so please send individual letters and encourage others to do the same.


The council reviews planning proposals with a set of criteria and areas, we have used the same areas below, so it is useful to include these in your letters/emails.

1. Traffic and parking 
This is the KEY REASON FOR OBJECTION, WHICH THE COUNCIL OFFICERS USED LAST TIME TO REJECT THE STORE PROPOSALS. It therefore has the most weight and our personal experiences and views about the issue will be the most compelling reason for refusal.

The proposed convenience store would unacceptably affect the parking and access in residential streets as:

  • The surrounding streets are narrow rat runs and do not allow vehicles to travel in both directions at once as cars are parked on both sides of the street. The development will significantly increase the likelihood of conflict between drivers passing through and parking for the shop. It will also result in increased congestion at rush hour and possible accidents due to frustration.
  • Parking availability is not sufficient close to the junction where most customers, flat dwellers and staff will park, in addition to existing residents.
  • Traffic and parking related to the development will cause an increased level of physical danger to pedestrians.
  • Lorries find it extremely difficult to negotiate the junction of Severn Grove and Kings Road, sometimes having to reverse in order to do so. Proposed parking restrictions on the corner are likely to be ignored due to the pressure for spaces so parking will continue, restricting turning space. A minimum twice daily occurrence lorries trying to get round the corner would be unacceptable.
  • The developers’ transport statement does not put all these factors together to properly address the very real traffic and parking  problems that this development will cause.

2. Character of the area
This is a predominantly quiet residential area in the Conway Road Conservation Area and next to the Cathedral Road Conservation Area. These have unique and distinctive characters formed by its mixture of family housing, flats, many small independent businesses, leafy streets and easy access to other bigger shops in nearby, easily accessible local retail centres. A variety of features of the development will adversely affect the Conservation Areas’ character and appearance including the following:

  • Shop signage and coloured opaque panels in ground floor windows would be obtrusive though this is downplayed in the black and white planning drawings.
  • The wide pavement on both Kings Road and Severn Grove may be used for unsightly retail displays and other clutter which would change the character of both streets.
  • External CCTV is mentioned in the design and access statement but not illustrated in the drawings. These would add to the clutter and ugliness and has no place in a residential Conservation Area.

3. Adverse/Negative effect on local traders and small businesses
The shop threatens the livelihood of many of the small local independent retailers who contribute to the diversity of the area and contribute much more significantly to the local economy than supermarkets with their national supply chains.

4. Amenity
The proposed convenience store would unacceptably affect the amenity of local residents:

  • There will be more noise and litter.
  • The long opening hours 7 days a week will lead to increased levels of noise and activity which will have a very detrimental effect on this mostly quiet residential area.
  • If the shop is granted a licence to sell alcohol this could encourage louder and more anti-social groups to gather outside on the widened pavements in the evenings. This possibility is recognised by the mention of use of CCTV in the Design and Access statement.

5. Disabled access/Accessible Buildings
Our accessibility expert has commented:
“On the access front nothing has changed. I looked through the new paperwork on-line and see there’s little difference other than more statistics.”

Thank you again for your support, we all really appreciate it.

Pontcanna Pine Team

12 thoughts on “They’re back… Co-op Supermarket Planned for Pontcanna Pine site

  1. Thank you Pontcanna Hub team for a great summary of the new proposal and for again arranging a meeting for us to discuss this matter.

    As well as causing a detrimental effect on the local environment, the additional traffic and parking problems will cause gridlock and accidents. There was a nasty accident on junction of King’s Rd and Pontcanna St in recent weeks so we could use this as a recent example of how dangerous this area is without the additional traffic.

    Is it possible to get the local Police to formally express a view to the Council about the likely gridlock and accident risk for the proposal? This proposal will undoubtedly cause more problems for them too.

    Also please can you drop a petition into our shop and a poster about the meeting. We’ll happily help support the NO campaign as any supermarket threatens our local area and our local businesses.

    • I ask myself why all the fuss about opening a Co-op store, Pontcanna needs dragging into the 21century and a multi store should be the first step. It’s no good just buying the Sunday paper or drinking the odd coffee in Pontcanna and claiming you are supporting the local business. Times are hard for most folk and a store which can give value for money is one answer, not the business which put 50p on the prices just because you’ve shopped in Pontcanna. James William Rides [resident]

      • Hi Jane, for balance we have posted your comment. And for balance i’ll post a response… Our concerns are not specifically for the Co-op its the wider impact, lorries, traffic, parking etc, inability of emergency services. These are the kind of issues we are campaigning on, not the price of a coffee or newspaper.

      • Please show some kind of interest to discerning comments: The name is JAMES not Jane! So the issues are with traffic, the environment and one shop’s impact on a sleeping populous. Ask you selves where do you shop, only at all the business in Pontcanna and never set foot in the large multi stores nearby. Where do the owners of the local shops shop? If the answer is only in Pontcanna, you truly have no need for a Co-op. If the answer is you use other venues with traffic problems then welcome to the real world.

      • Hello James, the issues identified by our team, concerned local people and the professional surveys we have commissioned are included on our site, in addition to the council contact details should you wish to contact them directly. Thank you for sharing your views with us, kind rgds Pontcanna Pine team.

  2. Thanks Suzi – its always good, and important, to make sure the council gets an accurate realistic view of the area and how this will affect it and the people who live and work here. I would definitely use the example you mentioned in your letter.

  3. Thank you for bringing this to my attention and setting out public opposition so eloquently.

    Of course we should fight against unwanted impositions in our streets. But it is also important to decrease demand for these stores who will naturally assume they will be welcomed wherever they like, despite the ruinous effects they can have on the area.

    In heed of this we at are boycotting major supermarkets which are engulfing our communities. We invite people to join us and sign up here

  4. The Co-op prides itself on its ethical stance, which makes it all the more baffling that they are participating in this proposed development. Either they are hypocrites or they simply don’t realise that this is an unwelcome invasion of the area. Perhaps it is worth contacting writing to them (the Co-op) as well as to the Council?

  5. Reblogged this on In the Dark and commented:
    Yesterday evening I went to a meeting of Pontcanna Residents for an update about the plans to build a supermarket on King’s Road. The developer, a Mr Voyle, has tried before but had his planning application rejected. He’s back again with a revised application that states that the Co-op want to put a supermarket on the site.

    However, this is where the plot thickens. Last night’s meeting was attended by a senior member of the Co-op’s management, who stated categorically that they had no interest in the site and were unaware until a few days ago that their name was being used in the planning application.

    You can draw your own inferences about what this developer is up to…

    • Thanks for the reblogging… Yes waiting with bated breath today to see the developers response to the eloquent and professional Mike Ash-Edwards, Co-op Wales/Cymru Company regional secretary. Also take the point you raised at the meeting last night -if it does prove to be that the developer did not have an agreement in place with the Co-op as Mike stated, what light does it shed the remainder of his proposal’s authenticity?

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