A pasture site will see new restaurants, a 100-bed hotel and a petrol station after a £57million development was approved despite objections from local residents.
The site will be next to the A1(M) and will be run by Roadchef near Catterick Village, North Yorkshire.
The plans were recently criticized after it was claimed the site was just a few miles from the Leeming Bar and Scotch Corner motorway rest areas.
The Yorkshire Wildlife Trust and Natural England have also warned that the £57million development will impact a nearby Site of Special Scientific Interest.
The two concluded that there will be an overall loss of habitat at the site, and that this could also impact the Swale Lakes Site of Special Scientific Interest and important bird populations.
However, the planning officers of Richmondshire District Council said the program would benefit the local economy.
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Plans call for a 100-room hotel, two drive-thru restaurants, including Costa and McDonald’s, a gas station, grocery store and overnight truck parking at exit 52.
Overall, the development will create 8,912 square meters of restaurant and cafe space. By comparison, Tesco Superstore in Catterick Garrison has a floor space of 6,899 square meters.
The bid received a majority rejection from residents, with 34 objections and just three supporters.
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Another opponent, Richmondshire Climate Action Partnership, said the proponents had provided no hard or convincing evidence that a new MSA was needed as “there are already many A1/A1(M) rest and refueling facilities for southbound and northbound traffic”.
The company has confirmed that it will pay almost £2million to create wildlife habitats elsewhere to offset the impact on local flora and fauna, such as curlews, and in particular the nearby SSSI of Swale Lakes.
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