Supermarkets may be only source of urban landscape projects

Supermarket-led building schemes with surrounding landscape may be the only regeneration in town centres for the foreseeable future, CABE has suggested.

The Government watchdog's report found new stores and mixed-use developments by supermarkets now made up large parts of our towns and cities and might be the only regeneration available.

CABE chief executive Richard Simmons said this trend was significant, given the history of public opposition to supermarkets at a time when the Government was encouraging localism.

"With local people given real power to decide what gets built and where, it will be even more in the interests of supermarkets to propose good schemes that benefit the area," he added.

The report, Supermarket-Led Development: Asset or Liability, was based on reviews by CABE of 30 schemes from retailers including Tesco, Asda and Sainsbury's.

But CABE found many schemes repeated proposals for out-of-town big buildings and large car parks, devoid of landscape and a good public realm. This was unsuitable for town centres, it said.

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