Posts Tagged ‘Bristol City Council’

UWE Stadium opening put back to 2015/16

Posted on Tuesday 15th January 2013 at 5:30 pm by SH (Editor)

Internal view of Bristol Rovers' proposed new UWE Stadium in Stoke Gifford.

The  21,700 seater stadium that Bristol Rovers plan to build on land near the University of the West of England (UWE) in Stoke Gifford, is now unlikely to be ready for the start of the 2014/15  season, as the club had originally hoped.

Media reports in the past week have quoted Club Chairman Nick Higgs as saying that the opening of the stadium is now “likely” to be delayed to the start of the 2015/16 season, with construction getting underway this summer.

The news comes as the club waits for the decision of a Bristol City Planning Committee on an application by Sainsbury’s to demolish Rovers’ existing stadium at the Memorial Ground in Horfield and replace it with a supermarket, housing and commercial units.

A report prepared by Council officers in advance of the Committee meeting, which takes place tomorrow evening (Wednesday 16th January), recommends that the plans be approved, subject to a number of conditions, although consent will need to be confirmed by the Secretary of State for Communities.

The UWE Stadium project, which was given the go-ahead by South Gloucestershire Council last July, is dependent on the football club selling its current ground to Sainsbury’s.

Construction of the new facility is expected to take 62 weeks and work was originally expected to begin this month, with an anticipated completion date of Spring 2014.

In an article in today’s Bristol Post, Mr Higgs claims the new stadium will bring more than £150 million of investment and hundreds of jobs to the area. The club’s joint project with UWE includes the construction of a new car park for students, which would allow the university to redevelop its ‘car park 20′ (east of Coldhabour Lane) for housing.

Judging by comments on the club’s official forum, fans’ enthusiasm for the project has waned in recent months as the team has slipped into the League Two relegation zone. A number of fans have questioned the commercial viability of the new stadium under the current circumstances but sources close to the club maintain that use of the stadium’s ancillary facilities by UWE on non-match days will generate a significant income stream.

Related link: UWE Stadium (The Journal)

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Tesco “objection” could impact Bristol Rovers’ new stadium at UWE

Posted on Wednesday 5th September 2012 at 4:11 pm by SH (Editor)

Aerial view of Bristol Rover's proposed new UWE Stadium in Stoke Gifford, Bristol.

The construction of a new stadium for Bristol Rovers on the UWE site in Stoke Gifford, which is dependent on the football club obtaining planning permission for the redevelopment of its existing ground in Horfield, could be impacted by an “objection” recently lodged by Tesco.

Rival supermarket group Sainsbury’s has submitted plans to demolish the Memorial Stadium and replace it with a foodstore, residential housing and commercial units. If the scheme is granted planning permission by Bristol City Council (BCC), Rovers will be able to use the money from the sale of the site to fund the construction of its new stadium at UWE, which was given the go-ahead by South Gloucestershire Council in July.

Club officials had originally expected the Sainsbury’s application to come before a BCC Planning Committee in August but the date has slipped, first to September and now to 7th November, according to a reliable source on the Bristol Rovers official forum website.

The latest setback is the news that Tesco has submitted a consultation response that “casts doubts on the robustness of the impact of the proposed development” citing numerous perceived issues with Sainsbury’s plans. These include creating an “uncomfortable relationship” with neighbouring residential properties, generating increased traffic movements and “failing to meet the site’s full potential to assist in delivering housing in Bristol in accordance with the National Planning Policy framework (NPPF)”.

Tesco also casts doubt on the robustness of Sainsbury’s analysis of the impact of the proposed new store on existing town and local centres, suggesting that this may have been under estimated.

The Tesco submission is described as a “formal objection” on the Rovers forum, although it has only been categorised as a “general comment” on the BCC website.

A comment on the Rovers forum condemns the Tesco move as “a cynical and selfish ploy by a company that is increasingly perceived as having no social conscience and no green credentials.”

More: Rovers hope to have new stadium ready for 2014/15 season »

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