Plans for McDonald’s near Ottery will be decided next week
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Plans to build a McDonald’s drive thru and service station near Ottery will be discussed next month.
Highways England has supported the plan which it says will plug a gap in services on the A30.
Proposals for a site at Straightway Head junction, next to the Daisymount roundabout, include a five-pump petrol station, a forecourt shop/sales building measuring 500sqm, 103 parking spaces a two-storey building with a drive thru and outdoor play area.
The applicant has stated that McDonald's is the intended operator.
Officers have recommended the plans be approved at the East Devon District Council development management committee meeting on Tuesday, December 3 - subject to a habitat regulations appropriate assessment.
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The scheme has drawn support from Ottery St Mary Parish Council, but West Hill Parish Council unanimously opposed the plans, while Whimple Parish Council said it could not support the scheme if the food outlet was open 24 hours-a-day.
Councillor Jess Bailey, who represents the West Hill and Aylesbeare Ward, has opposed the scheme, saying that she is astonished that with the backdrop of a climate change and ecological emergency, council officers are supporting the development of a petrol station and two storey McDonald's on top of a very large hill.
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Officers have said that the drive thru would not have such a large visual impact that it would be so harmful to the area, and that it is preferable to an existing plan.
Permission has previously been granted to build a roadside service area at the site, and the principle of development has been confirmed.
The construction of vehicular access to the site means that work on the previous plan has begun and the applicant could follow through with the plans if it wished.
The officer's report states: "The proposal has the support of Highways England who have advised that there is a need for a comprehensive service area facility on the A30/A3030 in Devon and that they support the principle of the proposal of a trunk road service area at this location.
"The long-term employment opportunities within the petrol filling station, shop and the drive through building and the contribution to the local economy that would be derived from this scheme are considered to be significant social and economic benefits that outweigh the limited and localised visual impact and landscape harm."