09-January-2014 by Mike Wilkinson, reporter, The Citizen
Drive-through cappuccinos have moved one step closer to reality at the Railway Triangle after councillors approved plans for the city’s latest Costa.
It is to open a branch of the coffee chain next to the roundabout leading to the new Morrisons supermarket.
The Metz Way development, known as Triangle Park could also pave the way for a new bar and restaurant – and even a takeaway – alongside four other light industrial units.
A £30,000 piece of public art will also be commissioned for the site.
Gloucester City Council’s planning committee granted approval for the outline plans at a meeting on Tuesday night.
But city councillor Mary Smith (L, Robinswood) said: “What does a coffee shop need with a drive-through? Surely if you’re in your car you can drive home and make a coffee when you get back?”
It will be the city’s 11th Costa when it opens.
Others can be found at King’s Walk, Southgate Street, Eastgate Street, St Oswald and Gloucester Quays, while Costa Express outlets are in Longlevens, Matson, Gloucestershire Royal Hospital and two city centre Tesco Express stores.
The Railway Triangle development will pave the way for hundreds of new jobs on top of the 350 created by Morrisons.
But there are fears that the site is now creating unprecedented noise levels for nearby residents.
Christina Reeves, from Armscroft Gardens, said: “Since the completion of phase one of the redevelopment there is now a constant hum of traffic noise from Metz Way which was not the case before the Morrisons store was opened and fully operational.
“It is evident that the traffic noise originates from the elevated section of Metz Way between the road bridge and the entrance to Morrisons.
“There is no buffer behind the crash barriers on this section and with the redeveloped site acting like an amphitheatre the traffic noise is carried toward Armscroft Gardens.
“This problem is having a detrimental impact on the living conditions of residents.”
But planning officer Adam Smith said that the council’s planning team had worked with developers on improving the planned landscaping around the site.
“We have looked at improving the area around the service yard,” he said.
“Costa drive-throughs seem to be very popular at the moment.”
Public art will also be installed, possibly along the embankment along Metz Way, but developers cannot put a sculpture on the roundabout because access is sometimes needed by large Network Rail vehicles to get to the railway.