LIDL, the German supermarket chain, has lodged an appeal to retain its current opening hours at its proposed new Carlow store.
Carlow County Council had set the opening hours of the new store at its current site on the Tullow Road at 9am to 10pm Monday to Saturday, and 10am to 7pm on Sundays and public holidays in the “interests of residential amenity and traffic safety”.
Lidl says it would lose 10% of its opening hours as a result and it “has the potential to have far-reaching impacts on operations, both in terms of viability and also in terms of loss of employment opportunities for staff”.
Customers who prefer to shop at quieter times and those who shop at particular times due to work, school and childcare commitments would also be impacted, says Lidl.
Lidl’s planning application had attracted multiple objections, with neighbours adjoining the property voicing their concerns and objections relating to traffic, deliveries, noise, lighting and waste.
Lidl wishes to open to the public at the earlier time of 8am from Monday to Saturday, while it also wants to extend store opening hours from 9am to 9pm on Sundays and public holidays. Lidl’s current store on Tullow Road trades the hours that are sought for the new store.
Lidl said that preserving the existing opening times would not impact residential amenity, while the proposed development would be beneficial in terms of noise and lighting at night time compared with the existing store. Lidl disputed that there was any road traffic safety justification for the reduction of hours.
The case is due to be decided by an Bord Pleanala on 19 June.