Expansion of Bicester Village and Tesco could create 3,500 jobs

Bicester Advertiser: Tesco store manager Chris Webb at the Bicester supermarket’s current site. Picture: OX51854 Richard Cave Tesco store manager Chris Webb at the Bicester supermarket’s current site. Picture: OX51854 Richard Cave

A MULTI-MILLION-POUND expansion for Tesco and Bicester Village was unveiled yesterday in a project that could bring more than 3,500 jobs to the town.

The two companies joined forces to announce their plans, which involve the supermarket opening up a new expanded store opposite its current position off the A41, and Bicester Village opening up 30 new shops in its place.

It will also lead to £11m in road improvements on the A41, Oxford Road and Pingle Drive in a move locals hoped would cut the chronic congestion around the area at peak times.

Tesco’s move is also anticipated to kick-start development of the 500,000sq ft Bicester Business Park on the land between the current Tesco/Bicester Village site and Wyevale Garden Centre to the south.

The supermarket giant wants to build a Tesco Extra, effectively doubling the current store’s size and creating 250 new jobs. It would cut traffic in Pingle Drive by about 50 per cent, a Bicester Village spokesman said.

Bicester Village would then expand into the current Tesco site with 30 new shops and take over the current 350-space parking area. It would lead to 500 new jobs.

A Bicester Business Park, which was first mooted five years ago, would add another 2,800 jobs.

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Bicester Village has also confirmed it is in negotiations to take on the new 700-space park-and-ride site, on the Kingsmere estate, using it for extra parking for the designer outlet centre at weekends and bank holidays.

On Boxing Day, parts of Bicester were gridlocked as 30,000 shoppers descended on Bicester Village.

Spokesman Miranda Markham said: “These very significant highway works and the proposed park-and-ride will alleviate the current traffic congestion that Bicester Village experiences at its peak trading times.

“It is important to stress that these highway improvements are not just for the benefit of Bicester Village, they will also be of huge benefit to residents and visitors wishing to access the town centre.”

Simon Petar, Tesco’s corporate affairs manager, said: “Our Pingle Drive store has served Bicester well for more than 20 years, but the move to the Business Park would make it far easier to shop with us.” Store manager Chris Webb added: “The new store plans are really exciting and I’m sure they will be very popular.”

Plans are due to be submitted to Cherwell District Council next month and, if approved, work could start on the new Tesco store and phase one of the road improvements next year. The companies hope the bulk of the development work would be finished by 2015.

Nigel Wild, president of the Oxfordshire Chamber of Commerce, said: “This is really good news and shows Oxfordshire is still a thriving economy despite the recession. This will ultimately grow our economy and protect us against the impact of the recession.”

Chris Harris, of business park site owner London and Metropolitan, said the sale to Tesco would fund the road infrastructure for the site.

He added: “This will attract quality office jobs to the town.”

Traffic campaigner Sallie Wright said: “I really applaud this. It is a shame it’s going to take a couple of years, but they have listened to what people have been saying and the trouble it has caused, and are doing something about it.”

Bicester’s MP Tony Baldry said: “Bicester is one of the fastest growing towns in England and we need to make sure all the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle are properly put in place.”

  • Public consultations will take place on May 18 and 19, from 11am-7pm, and 10am-4pm respectively, at the John Paul II Centre, behind the Church of the Immaculate Conception, The Causeway.

SOME of the main points of the expansion development:

  • Tesco’s new store will create 250 jobs, bringing the workforce to 480 in Spring 2014.

  • Bicester Village extension will create 500 jobs – it already employs about 1,000 people – a year later.

  • Phase One of the road improvements includes a new junction for Tesco and the business park, on the A41, which will be controlled by traffic lights.

  • Phase Two of the road improvements will include four lanes for traffic on the A41/Bicester Village junction, which will be controlled by traffic lights. There will be two dedicated lanes for local Bicester traffic and two lanes into the village and out.

  • Hamburger-style roundabout to be built at the Esso roundabout on the A41, again traffic flows controlled by lights.

  • Developer London Metropolitan says the new business park will provide 2,800 jobs.

  • Better cycle and footpaths to link Bicester Village and Bicester town centre
  • The business park will include landscaping and three lakes. It will be more than half the size of Oxford Business Park.

Comments (19)

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9:13am Wed 9 May 12

snert says...

"...It would cut traffic in Pingle Drive by about 50 per cent, a Bicester Village spokesman said..."

How would moving Tesco reduce the traffic by 50%? BV traffic accounts for more than triple the amount of traffic than Tesco does.

Aside from that rubbish statistic, this sounds like a good idea. As long as they've properly modelled the traffic management to ensure the design works. Lets face it, the wonderful changes to the A41 were poorly designed and lead to many accidents. I'll admit many were because of poor driving but a good road layout is a clear one and shouldn't come as a surprise to a driver regardless of whether they're speeding. Road design must take into account the possibility of poor drivers.
"...It would cut traffic in Pingle Drive by about 50 per cent, a Bicester Village spokesman said..." How would moving Tesco reduce the traffic by 50%? BV traffic accounts for more than triple the amount of traffic than Tesco does. Aside from that rubbish statistic, this sounds like a good idea. As long as they've properly modelled the traffic management to ensure the design works. Lets face it, the wonderful changes to the A41 were poorly designed and lead to many accidents. I'll admit many were because of poor driving but a good road layout is a clear one and shouldn't come as a surprise to a driver regardless of whether they're speeding. Road design must take into account the possibility of poor drivers. snert

9:38am Wed 9 May 12

Porphyro says...

snert says: "BV traffic accounts for more than triple the amount of traffic than Tesco does."

Is that a fact or an educated guess? In any case, removal of the Tesco-bound traffic would free up access to BV sufficiently to eliminate serious congestion in all normal circumstances.

Snert is right to say that 'a good road layout is a clear one' but it's pure nonsense to say that it shouldn't 'come as a surprise to a driver regardless of whether they're speeding'. 'Speeding can be defined as exceeding the speed limit and/or driving too fast for the road conditions, so to suggest that road engineering can nullify the consequences of speeding motorists is irresponsible.
snert says: "BV traffic accounts for more than triple the amount of traffic than Tesco does." Is that a fact or an educated guess? In any case, removal of the Tesco-bound traffic would free up access to BV sufficiently to eliminate serious congestion in all normal circumstances. Snert is right to say that 'a good road layout is a clear one' but it's pure nonsense to say that it shouldn't 'come as a surprise to a driver regardless of whether they're speeding'. 'Speeding can be defined as exceeding the speed limit and/or driving too fast for the road conditions, so to suggest that road engineering can nullify the consequences of speeding motorists is irresponsible. Porphyro

10:01am Wed 9 May 12

Mick Heavey says...

Hamburger style roundabout... mmm... so what happens when the traffic lights fail?... Remember normal roundabout etiquette doesn't work !!!... Is there a backup system planned?
Hamburger style roundabout... mmm... so what happens when the traffic lights fail?... Remember normal roundabout etiquette doesn't work !!!... Is there a backup system planned? Mick Heavey

11:14am Wed 9 May 12

Porphyro says...

I assumed it was an ordinary roundabout sponsored by and carrying Macdonalds logos and advertising.
I assumed it was an ordinary roundabout sponsored by and carrying Macdonalds logos and advertising. Porphyro

12:08pm Wed 9 May 12

CLLR KEN TIWARI says...

You'll never do-Enough-for- some, i suppose ?
You'll never do-Enough-for- some, i suppose ? CLLR KEN TIWARI

12:42pm Wed 9 May 12

Porphyro says...

Cllr Ken, you have an unrivalled knack of posting completely incomprehensible comments.
What on earth do you mean? Please don't answer that question!
Cllr Ken, you have an unrivalled knack of posting completely incomprehensible comments. What on earth do you mean? Please don't answer that question! Porphyro

12:50pm Wed 9 May 12

Andrew:Oxford says...

Mick Heavey wrote:
Hamburger style roundabout... mmm... so what happens when the traffic lights fail?... Remember normal roundabout etiquette doesn't work !!!... Is there a backup system planned?
Yes

You treat it like an ordinary roundabout and use the bun rather than the burger.
[quote][p][bold]Mick Heavey[/bold] wrote: Hamburger style roundabout... mmm... so what happens when the traffic lights fail?... Remember normal roundabout etiquette doesn't work !!!... Is there a backup system planned?[/p][/quote]Yes You treat it like an ordinary roundabout and use the bun rather than the burger. Andrew:Oxford

3:32pm Wed 9 May 12

brmath says...

still think it would have been simpler to move tesco to the other end of town away from bic vilage. good thing we have lidl and aldi cos otherwise scince somerfield closed we would be well stuck for choice
still think it would have been simpler to move tesco to the other end of town away from bic vilage. good thing we have lidl and aldi cos otherwise scince somerfield closed we would be well stuck for choice brmath

3:38pm Wed 9 May 12

Major Oxford says...

Bicester is a joke of a town without bicester village is it nothing
Bicester is a joke of a town without bicester village is it nothing Major Oxford

4:56pm Wed 9 May 12

Mick Heavey says...

Just note that the Green Road 'Hamburger' roundabout at Headington has resulted in some 'confused' people trying to go 'through' the roundabout the wrong way... so if the lights fail you somehow have to create a system to close off the the route across to convert it to a conventional one before the easily 'confused' seriously injure an innocent party... not rocket science is it?
Just note that the Green Road 'Hamburger' roundabout at Headington has resulted in some 'confused' people trying to go 'through' the roundabout the wrong way... so if the lights fail you somehow have to create a system to close off the the route across to convert it to a conventional one before the easily 'confused' seriously injure an innocent party... not rocket science is it? Mick Heavey

5:08pm Wed 9 May 12

faatmaan says...

with regard to the extra money/jobs for bicester, if there is only a fixed amount of money in the economy, somewhere else would potentially lose there revenue stream , effectively losing that amount of jobs and income, there is no way you can have your share of the cake and eat it, without denying others, in conclusion all we will see is a transferance of custom/money from one business to another and obvious effects.
with regard to the extra money/jobs for bicester, if there is only a fixed amount of money in the economy, somewhere else would potentially lose there revenue stream , effectively losing that amount of jobs and income, there is no way you can have your share of the cake and eat it, without denying others, in conclusion all we will see is a transferance of custom/money from one business to another and obvious effects. faatmaan

5:20pm Wed 9 May 12

hagar1 says...

@Major Oxford . You could say the same about Oxford without the University but that would be as silly as your comment and it would make me look as ridiculous as you.
@Major Oxford . You could say the same about Oxford without the University but that would be as silly as your comment and it would make me look as ridiculous as you. hagar1

7:25pm Wed 9 May 12

Porphyro says...

faatmaan wrote:
with regard to the extra money/jobs for bicester, if there is only a fixed amount of money in the economy, somewhere else would potentially lose there revenue stream , effectively losing that amount of jobs and income, there is no way you can have your share of the cake and eat it, without denying others, in conclusion all we will see is a transferance of custom/money from one business to another and obvious effects.
Not so. The economy is not a "fixed amount" with a finite number of jobs. If that were so, unemployment levels wouldn't fluctuate, we'd have no expansion and retraction of the economy and the government wouldn't even bother to say that growth is their main aim.
[quote][p][bold]faatmaan[/bold] wrote: with regard to the extra money/jobs for bicester, if there is only a fixed amount of money in the economy, somewhere else would potentially lose there revenue stream , effectively losing that amount of jobs and income, there is no way you can have your share of the cake and eat it, without denying others, in conclusion all we will see is a transferance of custom/money from one business to another and obvious effects.[/p][/quote]Not so. The economy is not a "fixed amount" with a finite number of jobs. If that were so, unemployment levels wouldn't fluctuate, we'd have no expansion and retraction of the economy and the government wouldn't even bother to say that growth is their main aim. Porphyro

8:43pm Wed 9 May 12

LORD PETER MACVEY 0X2 6EG says...

Any excuse to put in more traffic lights, the council love that and will pass any plans forthwith.
Any excuse to put in more traffic lights, the council love that and will pass any plans forthwith. LORD PETER MACVEY 0X2 6EG

10:51pm Wed 9 May 12

interested123 says...

Headline is very incorrect, Tesco's and BV are only bringing 750 jobs, not 3500. The rest are just pie in the sky
Headline is very incorrect, Tesco's and BV are only bringing 750 jobs, not 3500. The rest are just pie in the sky interested123

10:57pm Wed 9 May 12

Andrew:Oxford says...

interested123 wrote:
Headline is very incorrect, Tesco's and BV are only bringing 750 jobs, not 3500. The rest are just pie in the sky
Are you sure you've read the article in full?

It's quite clear where the potential for the other 2800 or so jobs is coming from.

Tesco purchase plot, developers fund infrastructure using income, infrastructure attracts builders then tennants, tennants employee people.
[quote][p][bold]interested123[/bold] wrote: Headline is very incorrect, Tesco's and BV are only bringing 750 jobs, not 3500. The rest are just pie in the sky[/p][/quote]Are you sure you've read the article in full? It's quite clear where the potential for the other 2800 or so jobs is coming from. Tesco purchase plot, developers fund infrastructure using income, infrastructure attracts builders then tennants, tennants employee people. Andrew:Oxford

10:24am Thu 10 May 12

steve1955 says...

Tesco development will no doubt happen after fight to get planning,Village expansion a maybe Commercial development doubtful lots of empty commercial properties all around traffic congestion eased never Lets wait in time this will come true I BET
Tesco development will no doubt happen after fight to get planning,Village expansion a maybe Commercial development doubtful lots of empty commercial properties all around traffic congestion eased never Lets wait in time this will come true I BET steve1955

5:24pm Thu 10 May 12

CAMBERWELLCARROT says...

On the face of it, it looks like a positive step to resolve a truly irritating issue of getting past all the BV traffic at peak times. I do object to Tesco having an even bigger presence and dominance in our town and our our country in general. Howabout getting a Morrisons or Asda for example?
On the face of it, it looks like a positive step to resolve a truly irritating issue of getting past all the BV traffic at peak times. I do object to Tesco having an even bigger presence and dominance in our town and our our country in general. Howabout getting a Morrisons or Asda for example? CAMBERWELLCARROT

1:02pm Fri 11 May 12

online_reader says...

CAMBERWELLCARROT wrote:
On the face of it, it looks like a positive step to resolve a truly irritating issue of getting past all the BV traffic at peak times. I do object to Tesco having an even bigger presence and dominance in our town and our our country in general. Howabout getting a Morrisons or Asda for example?
You have Aldi, Lidl, you're getting a Sainsburys. I know Bicester is called 'Tesco Town' but I really think the balance _is_ being redressed. Asda is about 6 miles away in Wheatley, and there are Morrisons in Banbury and Aylesbury if you want even more choice.
[quote][p][bold]CAMBERWELLCARROT[/bold] wrote: On the face of it, it looks like a positive step to resolve a truly irritating issue of getting past all the BV traffic at peak times. I do object to Tesco having an even bigger presence and dominance in our town and our our country in general. Howabout getting a Morrisons or Asda for example?[/p][/quote]You have Aldi, Lidl, you're getting a Sainsburys. I know Bicester is called 'Tesco Town' but I really think the balance _is_ being redressed. Asda is about 6 miles away in Wheatley, and there are Morrisons in Banbury and Aylesbury if you want even more choice. online_reader

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