Planning chiefs are set to finally decide the future of a long-derelict Worksop site earmarked for a £15 million shopping complex which could create up to 200 jobs.
Developer Opus North requested permission to build three retail units housing “well-known brands”, a garden centre and restaurant at a five-acre site off Carlton Road in June 2017.
The proposals are now set to be brought before Bassetlaw District Council’s planning committee after an extension lodged by the authority in order for “outstanding matters” to be resolved ends on March 30.
If given the go-ahead, the plans have the potential to create up to 200 jobs – but will entail the demolishing of two homes on the border of the site.
Beverley Alderton-Sambrook, head of regeneration at Bassetlaw District Council, said: “The council has agreed, with the developer, to extend the deadline for the determination of this site and we are currently in discussion with them to resolve the outstanding matters.
“While every endeavour has been made to fully consider the development proposal within the original statutory timescale, unfortunately this has not been possible.”
Opus North carried out a consultation into the plans last year and said “two thirds” of residents backed the scheme, which would bring in “new jobs, investment and increased shopping choice”.
Andrew Duncan, managing director of Opus North, said the developer was committed to making the site “work for the community”.
However, the proposals are not backed by Worksop Business Forum, which is concerned the development could reduce footfall in the town centre.
Philip Jackson, forum chairman, said the land should be set aside for housing.
He said: “Worksop does not need another out-of-town retail development.
“A great deal of hard work is going into improving the town centre and Bridge Street – we want to see the footfall increase, not move out of town.”
Tesco originally planned to build a supermarket at the site but later pulled out, citing financial strain.