Initial plans drawn up for new TK Maxx store at Longwater, Costessey

The TK Maxx store in Westwick Street, Norwich. Picture: Google StreetView

The TK Maxx store in Westwick Street, Norwich. Picture: Google StreetView - Credit: Archant

Clothing and home goods chain TK Maxx is looking at opening a new branch in Longwater, it has been revealed.

Next opened at Longwater in 2010. Photo: Jerry Daws

Next opened at Longwater in 2010. Photo: Jerry Daws - Credit: �Archant Photographic 2010

An agent for the firm paid a visit to Costessey Town Council, which covers the Longwater retail park, to gauge initial community reaction to the idea.

Mike Carpenter, director of Code Development Planners, gave a presentation to parish councillors and several members of the public about the proposal to build a TK Maxx on a vacant plot of land next to the department store Next off William Frost Way.

Mr Carpenter said the plan was for TK Maxx to share carpark access with Next, as well as creating extra parking spaces.

However traffic concerns, including over the safety of the pedestrian crossing between Sainsbury's and Next, were raised.

Patrick O'Connor, town council chairman, said the plan was still at a very early stage.

Mr O'Connor said: 'This was an initial enquiry, there's nothing on the planning applications (list) yet. This was simply saying 'we've got this idea, what do you think?'

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'The number of replies that were raised were enough to make him think about the different alternatives: Will there be a decent crossing? Will the building be an L-shape or what should it look like?

'It was a good idea for them to come to us initially and find out how the local see it.'

At the October parish council meeting it was pointed out that the Next carpark is already a challenge to exit, and that the segregated left-turn feeder lane was easier to access than trying to gain access to the right-hand lane in order to get to the roundabout for the A47 or to head back to Queen's Hills.

It was also suggested that dedicated staff parking also be included away from the store, and that cameras to monitor drivers' average speed should be considered for the area to prevent West End from becoming a 'rat run', and addressing the current problem of speeding through Costessey.

TK Maxx already has two branches in Norwich - one in Castle Mall and the other off Westwick Street.

Mr Carpenter was contacted for a comment.

What do you think of the plan for a new TK Maxx Branch? Email your views to stuart.anderson@archant.co.uk

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