The Secretary of State agreed with a planning inspector's recommendation to uphold the City Council's refusal to grant planning permission to the Moor Exchange retail development on land to the north of Honiton Road. In making his decision, the Secretary of State recognised that only a local retail centre was required at Monkerton and that the sort of development put forward for Moor Exchange could reasonably be accommodated on the bus station site in the city centre.
The City Council refused the original application in December 2014 on grounds that it would be contrary to the 'town centres first' approach in its Local Plan.
The mixed use development, comprising of a garden centre, shops, restaurants and leisure facilities, equated to one tenth the size of Exeter city centre's retail floorspace and that, Cllr Rachel Sutton, Lead Councillor for City Development, said, would include retail and leisure tenants that could also be incorporated in the city centre, enhancing its vitality and viability.
"This was not a small scale development and if allowed to go-ahead, would have caused significant harm to the strategy to protect and develop the city centre.
"I am pleased that the Secretary of State recognised the threat that this large-scale development represented and would like to thank all my councillor colleagues who stuck to their guns and resisted this application. This is the right decision for Exeter and its thriving city centre."
Member since: 10th July 2012
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