A GOVERNMENT inspector is to decide whether a drive-in, fastfood restaurant can be built in a residential area after borough council planners failed to process it in time.
Worldwide restaurant chain KFC (GB) applied to build the fast food outlet on the site of the old Graziers Arms pub in Weddington Road.
But the eight week deadline for it to be dealt with by the planning department at the Town Hall ran out and KFC have appealed to the Planning Inspectorate at Bristol.
A planning inspector will now decide the fate of the application which has led to a storm of protest.
Dozens of local residents objected to the restaurant which would be opposite a sandwich bar at a BP garage, permission for which has already been granted on appeal.
They bombarded the Town Hall with letters of objection, putting forward a total of 58 reasons why the restaurant should not be allowed to go ahead.
Among their worries are increased traffic problems on an already busy road, pollution, antisocial behaviour and litter.
Paula Gasgoigne, whose home is in Old Hinckley Road, said residents already suffer consistently heavy traffic congestion.
“At the rush hour, all lanes are brought to a standstill and a KFC restaurant will add to the risk of an accident,” she said.
“We are also worried about levels of air pollution, litter and that a KFC will attract a greater number of youths at night.”
Ward councillor David Warr said that the junction near Weddington Terrace where the restaurant would be built can be a `nightmare’.
He also said that at times `boy racers’ turned Old Hinckley Road into a `Monaco Grand Prix.’ The borough council’s planning applications committee unanimously rejected the restaurant plan.
Several councillors expressed concerns about the traffic dangers and the worsening of air pollution that the increase in cars using the area would produce.
Warwickshire County Council’s highways department had objected on grounds of traffic safety and the danger to pedestrians.
All of the objections will go before the planning inspector when he hears the appeal within the next few weeks.