Plans to turn an abandoned pub in the East of Cardiff into a supermarket have been shelved by councillors.
The former Carpenter’s Arms pub on Newport Road would have been turned into a Sainsbury’s but fears over traffic congestion, pedestrian safety and crime and disorder caused Cardiff Council’s planning committee to defer the application for rejection.
Local residents and councillors mounted a 450-strong signature petition to stop the supermarket-chain and its applicants, RJS Building Contractors, from going ahead.
Llanrumney councillor Heather Joyce spoke on behalf of residents saying they feared any extra traffic to the area would lead to the loss of life.
She said: “There are real problems with the junction onto Newport Road from this development. It’s a tight turn and I fear that anyone shopping there could be seriously injured.
“They say shoppers will come on foot but there’s a car park and the reality is people are going to stop off on what is already a very busy road.”
The application also drew criticism from senior politicians and policemen.
Chief Superintendent of South Wales Police, Bob Tooby, said: “Local residents have been constantly campaigning to reduce the speeding and parking problems.
“It would be difficult to analyse data around parking but no-one would deny how busy it is already.”
Superintendent Tooby also had concerns about cheap alcohol being sold in the area.
Cardiff South & Penarth MP, Alun Michael, backed the rejection of the supermarket from the area.
He said in a letter to the planning committee: “I find the concept of traffic entering and leaving the site of the Carpenters Arms Public House quite horrific. The traffic at that junction is heavy at all times of the day and night and because of south-turning traffic visibility is split across three lanes and is often problematic.”
Local traders have been campaigning against the supermarket and Rasik Limbani who has run Ken’s Grocery on Newport Road for six years was happy with the decisi0n.
He said: “It’s common sense. Sainsbury’s thought they could just walk in here and do what they like. They just saw a pot of gold and went for it, but we’ve shown them they can’t do that.”
Whitchurch councillor, Mike Jones-Pritchard, a member of the planning committee, lashed out at the application.
He said: “I expect better of a company like Sainsbury’s when I get an application like this. It’s terrible.
“I think in particular there’s the opportunity for the back of this development to become an area where youths could hang out and cause trouble, and no amount of lighting or CCTV is going to stop that.”
Llanrumney councillor Derrick Morgan called the plans an “abomination” and urged other members to vote against it.
Sainsburys were not available to comment on the decision.