The planned new service station is recommended for approval

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PLANS for a service station with electric car charging and a store on the outskirts of Skipton are recommended for approval.

The scheme, which was filed with Craven District Council a year ago, is considered ‘acceptable in principle’ and should be given the green light, the council’s planning committee will be advised on Monday (October 3).

If approved, the service station will also include a car wash, car park and service area in the grounds – designated local green space – between the A59 and Gargrave Road, east of the Gargrave roundabout . A new roundabout will be built on Gargrave Road, to share with the existing Travelodge, opposite the proposed development, and next to Keelham Farm Shop.

Agents for the claimant, Brookfield Property (Holdings) Ltd, a Yorkshire-based developer and ‘operator of modern, high quality road service facilities’, say the station ‘will fill a very distinct gap in the absence of roadside facilities along the A65/A59”. from Ilkley to Harrogate in the east, and Ingleton in the west.

In submissions to council, officers, Lichfields say the plan will generate up to 22 full-time and part-time jobs for local people “of different ages and abilities”.

He says: ‘It would also help reduce traffic on local A-roads and Skipton town center as road users passing through the area would not need to divert their journeys to existing Tesco or Morrisons facilities. .”

If approved, the roadside facility will include eight gas pumps and three electric vehicle fast charging stations. The store will sell a small range of convenience products and refreshments, and there will be restrooms and an ATM.

Solar panels will be installed on the forecourt canopy, there will be landscaping, wildflower areas and a living “green roof” over the store.

Stirton with Thorlby Parish Council opposed the plans, citing a threat to wildlife and habitat.

The parish council says the development will “cut off” a site of nature conservation importance.

It states: “The proposed development will cut through the existing SINC with detrimental impact and unacceptable consequences.

“The impact may seem insignificant in terms of rare species, but its overall impact on species abundance and the environment is troubling. soon we will have nothing.

Skipton Civic Society has also opposed the development of local green space and calls the proposed development “totally inappropriate development”.

He says: ‘The Local Greenspace designation is there to protect undeveloped land from development and so we oppose the application.

“In our view, this does not maintain the ‘spirit’ or intent of the site designation. It disturbs and occupies land that is currently available to wildlife as a wildlife corridor and wildlife residence, will increase lighting and revetment in the surrounding area, affect drainage and soil with pollution possibilities, and affect local city dwellers .

He adds: ‘This land is very prominent and forms a green entrance to the town which is much loved by the local community and the wildlife that live or use it.’

The officer’s report to Monday’s planning meeting, however, indicates that use of the area designated “local green space” is acceptable.

“The site currently includes designated local green space where only exceptional development will be permitted. Exceptional circumstances include local transport infrastructure. In this case, a roadside gas and electricity charging facility is considered an example of transportation infrastructure, and the development is therefore an exemption under the planning policy.

“The proposed development is considered acceptable in principle and in terms of visual impact, scale and design. The requirements for sustainable design and construction are met. Planning approval is recommended.

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