It’s a first for Yorkshire

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MORRISONS has broken with tradition in its design of a planned new store for Elland.

The supermarket said it would be an architectural first for Morrisons in Yorkshire.

Included is understore parking at surface level and the design aims to fully utilise the natural contours of the land.

The understore car park will also reduce the overall scale of the external car park.

The 25,000 sq ft sales area store will be the optimum size for Elland to fulfil a shopping need without dominating the town, according to Morrisons.

Peter White, of Watson Batty Architects Ltd, said: “The challenge we had as architects was to give an attractive, functional and accessible store, but the steeply sloping site means that we have to be creative in our designs.

“The result is a ‘stilted’ store with raised shop floor and partially undercroft car park, fully utilising the natural contours of the site.

“Access is key as pedestrians will approach the store from all directions. We also regard it as vital that vehicles can easily reach the site without contributing to town centre congestion.”

From Briggate, shoppers will enter the store from an attractive piazza, with landscaping and public seating.

There will be bus stops and pedestrian crossings at the piazza entrance with further access routes on all sides.

Motorists would enter from a new access road off the Elland Riorges Link to minimising store traffic on the local road network.

A planning application was submitted in December 2010 and if approved up to 300 jobs would be created at the store and its petrol filling station at Wistons Lane.

The scheme involves relocating fire extinguisher firm Nu-Swift nearby.

Asda is also battling for permission to open in Elland and followed Morrisons in submitting plans for a store at Dewsbury Road.

It said it would create around 200 jobs and improve surrounding roads.

Both applications are likely to be discussed together within weeks.

An Elland Supermarket Support Group is backing the Morrisons plan.

Spokeswoman Gillian Pearson said the group believed Morrisons offered more and had a better location.

“We are really positive. Asda is healthy competition but we are behind Morrisons,” she said.

l Do you think Elland’s supermarket plans are a good idea? Email yoursay@ halifaxcourier.co.uk