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Was the refusal of the McDonalds planning site fair and justified?

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Introduction

Was the refusal of the McDonalds planning site fair and justified? Aim I aim to investigate the reasons behind the refusal of the McDonalds, and then judge whether these were fair and justified. I also aim to find out why the didn't pursue there aim when there original plan got thrown out and to see if it was likely to succeed if placed somewhere in Abergavenny, and if so, then why. Background Information In 2001, Campaigners defeated the McDonalds fast food giant by forcing planning permission for a proposed McDonalds restaurant on the outskirts of the small welsh town Abergavenny to be refused. McDonalds felt this was an excellent place for an 82-seater restaurant for a number of reasons. These were because of its positioning next to a town, which means that it offers a wide customer base, and a good area to advertise to. The area is also placed next to the 'heads of the valleys' road, which runs parallel to the coastline along the top of all the valleys that lead down to the coastline. This road is regularly full of traffic running through to the west of Wales, which means that there are plenty of potential customers which can be advertised to on their way along the main road (Fig 1), and may also go into the restaurant because they simply feel like something to eat, and as the restaurant is placed on a junction, it provides easy access to. They also felt it would be an excellent place as there is a very nearby estate, in fact on the other side of the road (Fig 2), hence even more customers. Planning inspectors turned down the proposal for safety reasons, citing that the restaurant was inaccessible to residents of Abergavenny except by crossing the A465 heads of the valleys road. The refusal was hailed by anti globalisation protesters as a victory against the American giant by small town protesters. ...read more.

Middle

The response was that: * 80% were local residents * 5% tourists * 15% from remaining areas He said that the indoor market was probably the main source for people visiting the town. I also realised that the seasons and days would affect the number of people shopping in Abergavenny. And as I went on a cold November Wednesday morning, I predicted that the turnout would not be very good and that instead if I would have come in a summer weekend I would have been likely to find a lot more people from surrounding areas and tourists. Traffic Survey Upon conducting my traffic survey at the 'Heads of the Valley Road' I found that it was a very busy a well-used road. I found out that 25 vehicles pass this point in one minute. That is a vehicle every 2.4 seconds. I also found out that on average every one in five of these vehicles was an articulated lorry. I also made and educational guess that the average speed they passed this point at was about 50-55 mph. I feel the reason for this is due to it being such a popular road, it can get you quickly and easily across the country (fig 8 and 9), and being an A road it is hardly surprising they go at such quick speeds. Councils Views To look whether the refusal was justified I was required to give the reasons why the council refused planning permission to this site. The reasons are as followed: o They felt the site was unsafe to access and so had to be scrapped. One Planning Inspector said that many drivers would be to concern about what was happening on the road to notice anybody crossing this busy 'Heads of the Valley' Road. o They felt many were against the idea of a McDonalds coming to Abergavenny. o They also felt a litter problem would come about if McDonalds was built here, and so chose against the idea. ...read more.

Conclusion

I stuck to it and it seems to have paid off as I have got the results I wanted, and also answered the questions in full detail, using my results to back up m reasoning and logic. I do not feel there are many improvements I could make, apart from maybe try to get more results, and also try to get the results at a time when school children will be around in order to find out what they think on the matter. I feel my questions have been answered well and so there is very little improvement that can be made there, and also I feel that my data is easily adequate enough to supply my needs, in order to answer the question. The only other improvement I can think of is that it would have been better if I would have done an investigation closer to the time of this debate going on, as I have no doubt many people have forgot about the debate and also many people have probably changed their views on the matter. This would have also gave me much more accurate results to base my conclusion on, and so therefore would have been much more likely to be true, however I feel I have completed my investigation thoroughly and to the best of my ability with the results and information I could acquire. The only thing I feel is left to do is for McDonalds to apply for planning permission again, whether it be at the same spot or a different one, as I feel they should have not give up last time, as they found a very suitable spot with an excellent case to support it, I just feel the council were very harsh on them, however with the right persistence of the matter and the right frame of mind and views, I feel they could overcome any problems the council give to them, and succeed in getting planning permission for the site, and succeed in business in the Abergavenny area. By Thomas Melia ...read more.

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