New Aldi store proposed in regeneration plans for part of Axminster Carpets plot

Aldi could open a new supermarket in East Devon as part of plans to regenerate part of the Axminster Carpets site.

A public consultation was launched today over proposals which feature a foodstore and homes on 3.8 acres of surplus land on the plot in Musbury Road.

Axminster Carpets Limited says the scheme could create more than 450 jobs in the long-term and would see redundant industrial buildings demolished.

It adds that the scheme would net a private investment of £25million.

If given the go-ahead, the firm hopes work can start next year and the development finished by summer 2022.

A biodiversity enhancement zone, new vehicle access off Musbury Road, bus stops and the opportunity for a new pedestrian and cycle link through the estate are also on offer.

The remainder of the site would still be used by Axminster Carpets, with its loom relocated from one of the redundant buildings into the main factory at a cost of £600,000.

Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

An artist’s impression of the view from Musbury Road. Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

An artist's impression of the view into the site from Musbury Road. Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

An artist’s impression of the view into the site from Musbury Road. Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

Indicative view of new Aldi store and housing. Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

Indicative view of new Aldi store and housing. Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

An Aldi supermarket of up to 2,000sq m with around 100 parking spaces is proposed. The store would create around 40 jobs, according to the proposals.

The mooted new homes would have their own separate access road.

Axminster Carpets Limited said in a statement: “ACL Properties is proposing to develop surplus land on the eastern part of the Axminster Carpets estate.

“This is the first phase of a long-term plan for the consolidation and regeneration of the estate and modernisation of the carpet business.

“The proposal is for a mixed-use development featuring a new Aldi supermarket foodstore and a number of houses fronting Musbury Road.

“We would like to share these proposals with those living and working in the area and invite views on the proposed development before submitting an outline planning application to East Devon District Council later this year.

“Due to the current restrictions on public gatherings, the consultation will be held online.”

Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

The existing site. Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

Plans for the plot. Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

Aldi

Image: Axminster Carpets Ltd

The firm says the scheme would contribute to Axminster’s status, growth and self-containment by providing opportunities for local businesses and the wider community.

There are two large, redundant portal-framed factory sheds on the application site; one which houses the loom and the is other surplus to requirements, together with some small outbuildings.

Axminster Carpets Limited added: “The buildings occupying this part of the site are no longer fit for purpose and ACL have concluded it is not viable to adapt the buildings to meet potential alternative employment occupiers.

“The benefits of introducing retail and residential use to the estate are wide-ranging, including the loom relocation funding, contributing to the wider regeneration of the estate, creating new jobs, improving consumer choice in Axminster, and supporting the town’s growth.

“It would re-purpose underutilised brownfield land and is a sustainable location within the built-up area, and would give an improved balance sheet for the carpet-making business.

“It would be a catalyst for wider estate regeneration and economic growth and a small but valuable contribution to local housing needs.”

The consultation runs until October 6 with a planning application set to follow that month or in November. Further information on the proposals and a survey can be found here.

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