Green light for Canadian cafe and restaurant chain Tim Hortons at Broadstairs Retail Park – The Isle Of Thanet News

Canadian chain Tim Hortons heads to Westwood (Image istock)

By Local Democracy Reporter Jordan Ifield

A Tim Hortons cafe/restaurant and drive-thru at Broadstairs Retail Park, which will create 30 full-time and 40 part-time jobs, has been approved by Thanet Council.

The Canadian Food Chain, which started in Ontario in 1964, began expanding to the UK in 2017. It currently has 29 locations open with more expected to open across the UK with the nearest location in Thanet currently in Thurrock.

The Thanet outlet will be the first in Kent and shares the same retail park as Tesco Extra, Currys/PC World, The Range and Wickes.

The chain offers food, including donuts, bagels, burgers, and pancakes, as well as a variety of coffees and cold drinks.

Once built, the store will be open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., seven days a week.

The plans had been submitted to Thanet District Council last year and the decision was made this evening (January 19)

In a tense planning meeting, councilors had mixed emotions about another fast-food chain coming to Westwood.

Many councilors were openly concerned about the grassland Hortons would occupy, with Cllr Helen Crittenden (Lab) calling the site an example of ‘environmental poverty’.

Another member worried about overdevelopment was Cllr Mike Garner (Green): “My concerns are about the impact of biodiversity and the loss of trees

“Less than 100 yards away is the McDonald’s which has just had an application approved to upgrade its drive-thru to three lanes which will increase traffic.

“On the other side of the McDonald’s there is a new drive-thru Starbucks that is being built, which will also increase traffic.

“When you add it all up, there will be quite a negative effect on air quality and traffic.”

However, not everyone who was disappointed with the application voted against it, as Cllr Rick Everitt (Lab) said the board would have a hard time turning it down.

He said: “We have to consider this app on its own merits, regardless of the number of cafes nearby. I would be concerned if we reject this application because I think we would have a hard time justifying a refusal.

“What worries me is that at one point the greenery was seen as a positive benefit of previous proposals and then someone else comes along and says they want to develop this land. Which makes all this nonsense.

In an unusual move, planning committee chairman Cllr Michael Tomlinson (Cons) said the grassy area had been marred by litter for years and said he wanted to see it grow.

Eventually councilors were persuaded to approve the request, mainly by the jobs it would create in Broadstairs, and voted it through.

Cllr Keith Coleman-Cooke (Cons) said: “I understand what people are saying about the grass but I think we should take into account that it was a huge area of ​​grass before it became Westwood.

“When we talk about people shopping there, I don’t think it will increase traffic because people will choose to go to McDonald’s, Starbucks or Hortons.

“Personally, I also think 70 jobs is a lot of local jobs.”

In a statement, the developers say: “Its (Tim Hortons) current focus is to expand its drive-thru model across the UK, including on the app site.

“Tim Hortons’ offer is different from that offered by McDonalds, KFC and Burger King and is comparable to that offered by café operators such as Costa or Starbucks, with a substantial part of the offer comprising hot and cold drinks and bakery products. merchandise, including a huge selection of donuts.

“The hot food offering includes paninis and ‘fondues’ as well as hot sandwiches and wraps, again similar to other cafe operators.

Planning officers had recommended the restaurant be approved, saying that while there would be a loss of green space and six trees, the space was unprotected and the economic benefits outweighed the environment .

To remedy this, Hortons will plant 10 new trees and wildflowers around the site.

About Vivian J. Smith

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