Tesco is awaiting the start of a government planning inquiry next month into a giant £94m mixed-use development in Dartford - the supermarket’s most ambitious to date with plans for up to 490 flats on top of a 110,000 sq ft Extra store.
The application details a market square, a medical or community centre, a children’s play area, as well as a range of shops and cafes. The development is a joint project with St James’s Investments.
However, in May the scheme was called in by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, which will review the case next month. A spokeswoman for Tesco said the development met all the criteria for a Thames Gateway scheme. “It’s on a brownfield site, it’s sustainable, it’s regenerating a run-down town centre, and it’s promoting a 24-hour cafe culture,” she said.
Dartford Borough Council has approved the application in August, but it was called in by John Prescott due to an element that involves building a new road through the park.
If approved, work would start next summer at the earliest. Tesco has said that it wants to build up to 4,000 new homes by 2008.

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