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Sunday, 21 September 2014

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Asda touted as firm set to move into new Carlisle supermarket

Another new supermarket, almost certainly Asda, will open in Carlisle in the early summer.

Industry sources have named Asda as the most likely occupier of the 36,000sq ft unit in St Nicholas Gate Retail Park in London Road.

The chain already has a smaller store there.

Moving would give it more room and allow the sale of non-food items. The present Asda has planning consent only as a food store.

The company has yet to confirm that it is taking the space but work on site is already underway.

Carlisle City Council granted planning permission for a supermarket in 2011 in the unit previously occupied by MFI, which closed in 2008.

The original plans were for a 46,300sq ft store, incorporating the Brantano footwear unit next door. It will now be slightly smaller but Brantano will not have to move.

The planning application said the new supermarket would employ between 150 and 200 people.

The scheme will also see the creation of a new 5,500 retail sq ft unit and demolition of the Burger King restaurant fronting London Road to create more parking spaces.

A date for Burger King’s closure and demolition has yet to be finalised, although staff there were this week formally served with 30 days’ notice of redundancy.

Savills, the letting agent for St Nicholas Gate, carried out a door-to-door survey in support of the planning application, which it says showed “overwhelming” public support for a new supermarket. Canvassers spoke to 480 people, 443 of whom backed the idea, and 44 out of 50 comments’ cards filled in at an exhibition at Greystone Community Centre supported a store.

Meanwhile, Savills is looking for a new tenant for the unit occupied by Toys ’r’ Us, which is closing this month.

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