HIGH street giant Tesco has come under fire for opening a new store just minutes away from two other branches.
The supermarket giant plans to open a new store at the former Monks Motors showrooms in City Road, Roath, Cardiff.
But residents and politicians have hit out at the plans, saying the new shop would only be a three to four minute stroll away from Tesco Metro, in Albany Road, and an eight to 10 minute walk from another in Salisbury Road, Cathays.
Resident Penny McCormick of Cyfarthfa Street, Roath, said: “City Road already has in the region of six or seven convenience stores.
“It is a very cultural area, full of small businesses run by local people from a variety of ethnic backgrounds. This is what makes the area such an interesting place to live.
“It would be sad for City Road to lose its identity and the opening of a Tesco store would lead to closure of some of these businesses.”
Tesco has applied to Cardiff council for a licence to sell alcohol for 17 hours a day from 6am at the planned new store.
Lyndsey Maiden, co-ordinator for Cardiff Friends of the Earth, which opposes the plans, said: “This is yet more aggressive manoeuvres on the part of the supermarkets. Tesco currently has 12 stores open in Cardiff and have tried to open another store in Birchgrove. We urge the people of Cardiff to choose local shops, the Riverside and city markets.
“People should vote with their feet and show the supermarkets where the real power lies.”
Cardiff Central AM Jenny Randerson said: “Chain stores such as Tesco can damage the local economy and identity and create clone towns.
“This new location will mean a third Tesco store within an area where the sale of alcohol has already reached saturation point.”
Ward member and council leader Rodney Berman added: “Tesco’s quest for domination of the market clearly knows no bounds.
“What benefit would there be from having a new Tesco in City Road, when there is already one just around the corner in Albany Road? I am concerned all a new Tesco in Roath would do is drive many of the small independent traders in the area out.”
He said it was unlikely Tesco needed planning permission because the premises already had a previous retail consent.
The Echo has made repeated calls to Tesco but the company has not responded.
Cardiff council will consider the application for a premises licence at its meeting on June 8.