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Tesco to seek compensation for losses if Inshes roundabout plans go ahead

By Andrew Dixon

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Tesco fears trade will be hit if planned changes for Inshes roundabout go ahead.
Tesco fears trade will be hit if planned changes for Inshes roundabout go ahead.

Tesco has lodged an objection to planned changes for Inshes roundabout.

The supermarket giant expects trade at its Inshes Retail Park store to be negatively impacted if the Highland Council proposal gets the green light.

Inshes roundabout has a long-standing reputation for its lengthy tailbacks, particularly for city workers during the morning and afternoon commute.

Following a public consultation, Highland Council plans to reduce the number of exits from the roundabout from six to four, controlled by traffic lights.

There would be various other changes to existing roads.

Tesco is concerned about the potential loss of "direct access" to the store from one of the existing roundabout exits which would go if plans become reality.

ECS Transport Planning Ltd (ECS) has been commissioned by Tesco Stores Ltd to review the proposals. It has lodged an objection with the council.

The response stated: "Tesco will require that further work is undertaken as the potential loss of direct access to their store and petrol filling station (PFS) will result in a significant loss of trade.

"Tesco wish to ensure that a direct access is retained to their store and will require a comprehensive study to be undertaken which considers all options. Given the proposed alterations to the retail park access, it is disappointing to note that a comprehensive study has not be undertaken."

Among its concerns are that motorists will use roads designed for accessing premises at the retail park as a rat run to avoid Inshes roundabout, stating: "The queuing on the Southern Distributor Road will result in traffic diverting to the retail park roads and [new] junction with Culloden Road which is not reflected in the model [within the planning application]. In reality, it is likely that the operation of the retail park will be considerably worse than reported."

It added: "A comprehensive study is required for a fundamental infrastructure scheme which has been promised by the council for approaching 20 years. The current information provides no comfort for our client and appears to indicate that the Inshes area will be significantly more congested despite the proposed scheme.

"Tesco will require a direct access to their PFS and store from Inshes roundabout to maintain their ability to trade and serve their existing customer base. Any reduction in level of access will result in a loss of trade and compensation will be sought from the council."

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