Retail-led mixed-use proposals lodged at Crookbridge

Plans have been submitted to Stirling Council for a mixed-use development including a new retail park at Crookbridge.

Ramoyle Developments Ltd wishes to progress its proposal, which would include offices, a gym, drive-thru restaurants, a car showroom and parking, on a 12.68-acre site south of Wickes and north of Kerse Road and Muirton Road.

The location is already allocated for business and retail use in the Stirling Local Development Plan and earmarked as suitable for “bulky goods retail and commercial leisure development”.

However, in documents submitted with the application, agents for the developer Yeoman McAllister Architects said: “The specific issue here is that the retailing proposed in this application is not bulky goods retailing.

“However, submitted retail impact and sequential assessments demonstrate that the criteria identified for the consideration of the acceptability of the proposals have all been met. There will be no unacceptable individual or cumulative impact on the vitality and viability of any network centre, including the city centre; the development will meet proven qualitative and quantitative deficiencies in existing retail provision; it will be of a scale and character commensurate with the size of catchment served; and there are no sequentially preferable locations which could accommodate the proposed development.

“In our view, it is indisputable that Stirling has an oversupply of land and premises reserved for bulky goods retailing, evidenced by undeveloped areas which have been allocated for many years, as well as vacant buildings, particularly at Springkerse.

“The Crookbridge site has been available for the development of bulky goods for a decade with no interest, and it is inevitable that it will remain vacant unless a more flexible approach to its use is taken.

“It is of course the case that the development will have significant economic benefits. It will ensure the retention of important local employers in Stirling and create approximately 448 jobs in total. The proposed 1,860sqm of Class 2 & 4 business uses will be cross-subsidised by the wider development, and would not be economically viable without it. This will create 155 jobs within the total.”

The developers are said to be in “advanced discussions” with potential operators of the proposed units.

The agents added: “Two of the proposed non-retail operators are well-established businesses in the Stirling area which are seeking to invest locally by improving their facilities. Crookbridge offers the opportunity to retain these important employers in the city.”

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