‘No current plans for housing development at Tesco site’

Tesco, Carnmoney Road.
Tesco, Carnmoney Road.
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Planning Service has confirmed that there are no live planning applications for a housing development at the Tesco supermarket site on Carnmoney Road, Glengormley.

Rumours have been circulating that planning permission has been granted for a major residential development at the property after Tesco announced last week that the store will shut in August.

However, Planning Service has confirmed that there are “no current planning applications on the site.”

The last application, a plan for 96 apartments submitted in 2009, was turned down by the Planning Appeals Commission.

The Times has asked the owners of the site, PBN Properties, what its plans are for the retail complex given that the anchor tenant isn’t renewing its lease.

No-one from the company was available for comment at the time of publication.

A total of 58 people are at risk of redundancy after Tesco confirmed that the Carnmoney Road store will close on August 9.

The retailer has said that while it can’t rule out the possibility of redundancies, it will endeavour to redeploy as many staff as possible to other sites.

“Closing the store was a difficult decision and our priority is to look after our colleagues and wherever possible, offer them alternative jobs with Tesco,” a spokesman for the company said.

One long-serving member of staff said that she and her colleagues are “absolutely gutted” about the decision to close the store. And she claimed that they are unlikely to secure new jobs at Tesco’s other local outlets - at Northcott and Abbey Retail Park.

“We’ve just been told that we should keep an eye on the noticeboard for details of any vacancies within the area, but those could be in Banbridge, Knocknagoney, Dunmurry or wherever,” she explained. “It’s up to us to apply for the jobs and there are no guarantees. Tesco are certainly not coming to us offering us new jobs.”

The Tesco spokesman added: “We will continue to meet with each of our colleagues at Glengormley individually over the next few weeks. Their future is our priority and we want to do all we can to help them through this time.”

North Belfast MP Nigel Dodds and MLA Paula Bradley said that they will be seeking a meeting with Tesco management in a bid to ensure that job losses are kept to a minimum.

The decision to close the former Crazy Prices supermarket also leaves the four small businesses located at the Carnmoney Road site facing an uncertain future.

It’s understood that the business owners are currently discussing their options with PBN Properties.