Plans for Portsmouth Land Rover dealership to be decided next week

REVISED plans for a new Land Rover dealership in Portsmouth will be considered by councillors next week.

Friday, 13th August 2021, 4:55 am
A CGI of the proposed Land Rover dealership at Lakeside in Portsmouth

Planning permission for the for the site next to the Village Hotel at Lakeside Business Park was granted last year but final approval has been delayed by the council's £138m purchase of the estate.

Ahead of these arrangements being made, a revised design for the dealership, was put forward and the council's planning committee will be asked to approve this on Wednesday, (August 18).

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The original application for the Sytner Group-run business was approved by Portsmouth City Council's planning committee in January 2020, subject to off-site ecological mitigation measures being agreed.

At the same time, the council was completing its purchase of the business park which, a report says, has 'delayed' this being finalised.

'Due to the acquisition of much of the Lakeside Business Park by Portsmouth City Council, it has not been possible to complete the legal agreement for ecology mitigation as originally envisaged, which has led to a delay in determination,' it says. 'An alternative agreement between PCC and the applicant to secure the off-site ecology mitigation is now being progressed.'

With final planning permission still not in place, in May, revised plans were submitted, including reducing the size of the dealership building by more than a quarter.

According to the plans, this would free up space for an increased amount of outdoor display space to meet rising demand for electric vehicles.

'Due to the changing requirements of the automotive industry andthe move towards electric vehicles Sytners' requirements for thethe site have changed," a statement submitted with the application says.

'As such the proposal presented offers a reduced building footprint on the site while retaining similar heights.'

The revised application will go before the council's planning committee on Wednesday for a decision with council planning officers recommending that it be approved, based on its previous decision.

'There has been no material change in the policy position [since January 2020] that would warrant a different determination,' it says. 'The principle of the proposed car showroom is therefore considered to remain acceptable, subject to all other relevant policy considerations.'

A final decision will be made at Wednesday's meeting.