Southway Drive, Plymouth

Following the LPA’s initial concerns on a number of issues, Planning Potential secured a positive officer recommendation and a committee resolution to grant permission for an ALDI foodstore in north Plymouth in November 2016.


The proposal for ALDI’s third store in the City involved the redevelopment of part of a former industrial premises within the Southway neighbourhood of Plymouth.

The retail case centred on the lack of main food shopping provision in the neighbourhood and the opportunity to strengthen the local shopping centre by clawing-back trade from overtrading out-of-centre superstores. The scheme was designed to reinforce pedestrian connections with the adjacent Southway Local Centre, encouraging linked trips between the proposed foodstore and the existing traders.

Following an objection from the Co-op, the anchor tenant of the Local Centre, Planning Potential provided a robust response that highlighted examples of edge-of-centre discount retailers trading in a complementary manner alongside smaller convenience stores elsewhere in Plymouth.

Prior to obtaining officer support, we were also required to address a range of strategic level and detailed planning matters, such as an emerging site allocation for a nearby district centre; requests for infrastructure contributions; airport safeguarding; protection of employment land; highways impact; sustainability; site layout; and landscaping.

Following a resolution to grant at committee, permission was secured in November 2016, with the store opening in late 2017.

Benefits of the development include:

  • Regenerating a longstanding vacant brownfield site with an active use
  • Delivering enhanced food shopping choice in an accessible edge-of-centre location
  • Creating employment and regeneration benefits for the Southway neighbourhood and wider area


Summary of achievements:

  • Coordinated pre-application discussions with the LPA to identify the principal issues
  • Coordinated a community consultation exercise, issuing a consultation leaflet and Meeting with key local stakeholders
  • Secured strong support from the local community prior to application
  • Produced a detailed planning statement and retail impact assessment
  • Coordinated the production and submission of the planning application
  • Successfully rebutted objections from other retailers
  • Negotiated suitable planning conditions to meet commercial requirements
  • Secured a positive resolution at planning committee with no S.106 obligations.