A discount supermarket chain has signed a deal to bring one of its stores to an Aberdeen community – even though it has not yet applied for planning permission.
Last month, Aldi announced its intention to build its third store in the city on Countesswells Road, opposite the entrance to the Robert Gordon’s College playing fields.
Representatives from the German chain attended a virtual meeting of the Craigiebuckler and Seafield Community Council earlier this week, and fielded questions from residents on a number of issues surrounding the proposed development.
The company’s property director Philip Johnston revealed a contract has already been signed with property developer Dandara, which is responsible for the adjacent housing development.
Dandara would play no part in the building of the shop.
Mr Johnston explained Aldi is keen to bring another store to Aberdeen as it wants to expand its presence in the city.
Currently it has two stores – one at the Beach Retail Park and the other at Cornhill.
He said: “In Dundee we have four properties and permission for another, but we are under-represented in Aberdeen and it’s an area we have been targeting quite heavily.
“There are limited options for people to shop in the area. Generally they have to go to Bridge of Dee, and we want to bring something a bit more locally.
“We started looking in the area around 2017, and we have now concluded a contract with Dandara and we are now in a position where we want to pursue planning permission for it.
“On average, people visit our stores three to four times a week and generally they are coming from the local community.
“This store would be primarily aimed at people in the growing communities to give them more local options.”
The store would be around four metres at its highest point and would consist of roughly the same layout as Aldi’s other shops, with the company employing a uniform approach.
It would have around 100 parking spaces, but representatives at the meeting insisted it was highly unlikely all of these would be in use at once.
The store would be designed to be in keeping with nearby developments, while measures would be introduced to combat noise concerns.
Although a number of trees would need to be removed to make way for the store, Mr Johnston said Aldi plans to plant three more for each one it takes out.
And the company would look to create a footpath along the north side of Countesswells Road, and would seek to have it adopted by Aberdeen City Council.
A planning application for the proposed development is expected to be submitted in due course.