APPROVED | Green light for £8.9M Home Bargains store & garden centre in Ballymena
An exciting proposal for a 39,160 sqft new build store for Home Bargains in Ballymena has received the green light from Mid and East Antrim Borough Council.
Council's Planning Committee discussed the application at meeting this morning, Thursday 9th February, and approved plans for the store to be built on a derelict site off Queen Street in the Harryville area of the town, previously used by Ballymena Construction Company.
Love Ballymena announced details of the planning proposal for the new-build outlet just over a year ago in January 2022. At the time the news generated much interest and was welcomed by the local community who have been calling for the popular discount chain, owned by TJ Morris Ltd, to open in the town.
Representing an investment of £8.9M, the new store is expected to provide an economic boost for the area, initially creating around 70-80 construction jobs, and when built the company predicts it will offer around 80-100 jobs, paying approximately £800-900k in wages per year. It is anticipated that the store site will yield annually about £210,000 in rates.
The proposed 4.5 acre site will host a 30,000 sqft store with an attached 7,620 sqft garden centre facility. The space also includes 145 car parking spaces, and 10 cycle parking spaces, as well as a service yard.
A public consultation was held at the beginning of 2022 regarding the plans for the new store, with all neighbours within 200m of the site invited to participate )including the residents on Queen Street, Toome Road, River Terrace, Wakehurst Road, Wakehurst Park, Paradise Avenue, Lady Smith Terrace and Railway Street). The consultation received no responses.
Commenting local TUV Ballymena councillor Matthew Armstrong said:
“I welcome the decision by the Planning Committee to approve a new Home Bargains store in Harryville. This is a major project which will create employment opportunities locally and provide an even wider variety of choice for the comsumer. I do trust that shoppers will also continue to support our town centre traders which have been a feature of local life for many years”.
The TUV chair of the planning committee, Alderman Stewart McDonald, added:
“This is a project which will be welcomed by many people. Home Bargains is recognised as a company which provides people with affordable opportunities to shop and I wish them every success in the days ahead”.
Love Ballymena has asked TJ Morris Ltd for comment and we will keep our readers up to date with any further developments on this story.