Plans to build four new cafe and restaurant outlets on a site just off the Northway in Portadown have taken a major step forward.
Planning officials are now poised to recommend granting outline permission for the major development beside the town’s Asda store and next to Portadown Rugby Club.
But it will be subject to a number of conditions.
Proposals were first drawn up in 2015 and submitted in the name of the Portadown-based Turkington Properties Ltd.
Amended plans were then brought forward last October.
Now officials will recommend to the April meeting of council’s planning and regulatory services committee that outline approval be given.
The development would consist of a total of four cafe/restaurants. Three of these will be contained side-by-side in a row – each in the region of 2,400 sq ft – and separate to them will be a drive-thru, approximately 1,800 sq ft.
No proposed tenants’ names have been linked to the project as yet.
The scheme would also include a total of 133 parking spaces, including a number of disabled.
The application has required much consideration since first mooted in November 2015.
There had been concerns over the effects on traffic in the area and a number of studies since been carried out.
Access will be through the existing car park at Asda.
In addition, environmental health has identified some issues which first need to be addressed in relation to “ground gas risk” and “asbestos fibres in the soil”. It has recommended remedial measures be undertaken prior to any work starting on site and has told Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council of this need.
The decision on whether or not to grant permission will fall to councillors but planners are now content that outline permission is warranted.