NEARLY 1,000 people took the chance to view plans for a Morrisons supermarket in Shoreham.
Early analysis indicates two-thirds were in support of the proposals for the Brighton Road site, currently occupied by Frost’s Garage and the Minelco chemical works.
But concerns over traffic and air quality in the town centre were also highlighted by many residents.
The pre-submission public consultation was held by Morrisons and Quora Developments to explain the plans to residents and get feedback on them.
The proposal is for a mixed-use development comprising a new Morrisons supermarket, three independent retail units, flats, car parking and the creation of a riverside walk and other associated works.
Organisers said the consultation was very well attended, with around 935 people visiting over the two days, May 10 and 11.
Comments forms, which were completed by those attending, are being considered prior to the formal submission of a planning application, which is expected in June.
Morrisons development executive David Bevan said: “From talking to visitors at the exhibition and from an early analysis of the comments forms that people have submitted as an important part of the planning process, a clear two thirds of attendees supported the proposal welcoming the choice, competition and jobs that Morrisons would bring and understanding and support for the need to regenerate Brighton Road.
“We are very encouraged by this level of support for our plans.
“As we continue to evolve our proposal, we will be reflecting on the comments made by all attendees at the consultation and trying to address them.
“What was abundantly clear to us is the importance of highways, local congestion and air quality in the town.
“Our highways consultants and other experts will be continuing to examine these issues in detail.
“They are crucial for us to get right and we are determined to do so.”
Developers say that if plans go ahead, there will be approximately 375 local job opportunities and that the store will kick-start the regeneration of, and provide a catalyst for, further inward investment into Shoreham.
The development will also provide an additional 438 car parking spaces and developers say it will bring new, as well as local, shoppers back to Shoreham.
The multi-million pound investment will include a foodstore, petrol filling station and the large shoppers’ car park, together with some smaller retail/leisure units and new homes.