New McDonald's restaurant could open on 'prime' development site

The vacant land at Leisure Way in Lowestoft earmarked for a new McDonald's restaurant.

The vacant land at Leisure Way in Lowestoft earmarked for a new McDonald's restaurant. - Credit: Mick Howes

New jobs could be created as plans have been unveiled to open a third McDonald's drive-through restaurant in a coastal town.

The vacant land at Leisure Way in Lowestoft earmarked for a new McDonald's restaurant, with Tesco in the distance.

The vacant land at Leisure Way in Lowestoft earmarked for a new McDonald's restaurant, with Tesco in the distance. - Credit: Mick Howes

A scheme has been earmarked for a new McDonald's restaurant on vacant land in north Lowestoft, opposite the town's main Tesco supermarket and close to a Travelodge Hotel.

The vacant land at Leisure Way in Lowestoft earmarked for a new McDonald's restaurant, with Travelodge in the distance.

The vacant land at Leisure Way in Lowestoft earmarked for a new McDonald's restaurant, with Travelodge in the distance. - Credit: Mick Howes

It comes after the restaurant chain lodged three Illuminated Advertisement Consent applications to East Suffolk Council earlier this month.

Travelodge in Lowestoft.

Travelodge in Lowestoft. - Credit: Mick Howes

These three applications are currently "awaiting decision."

The proposed development on Leisure Way, Lowestoft.

The proposed development on Leisure Way, Lowestoft. - Credit: McDonalds Ltd/Scurr Architects

One of the applications centres around "various site signage including four freestanding signs, one playland sign, one banner sign and 28 DOT (direction of travel) signs" on land at Leisure Way in Lowestoft.

The approach to Leisure Way in Lowestoft.

The approach to Leisure Way in Lowestoft. - Credit: Mick Howes

A second Illuminated Advertisement Consent application has been lodged for "the installation of a freestanding totem sign" on land at Leisure Way, with the third application for the "installation of six fascia signs, three booth lettering signs and one 15" digital booth screen."

Leisure Way in Lowestoft.

Tesco on Leisure Way in Lowestoft. - Credit: Mick Howes

The new plans come after a drive-through outlet of the fast-food restaurant chain opened on a disused petrol station off Mill Road at Horn Hill in Kirkley, Lowestoft on April 21 last year.

However, business leaders, shoppers and retailers expressed dismay at the subsequent closure of the McDonald's restaurant on the main approach to Lowestoft town centre.

Now, almost a year on from the opening of the south Lowestoft drive-through restaurant and the closure of the town's London Road North restaurant, agents Planware Ltd have submitted plans on behalf of McDonald's Restaurants Ltd.

The proposed application site boundary.

The proposed application site boundary. - Credit: McDonalds Ltd/Scurr Architects

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The plans show the new restaurant, with drive-through facilities, parking spaces for almost 60 vehicles and an electronic vehicle charging area.

The proposed development on Leisure Way, Lowestoft.

The proposed development on Leisure Way, Lowestoft. - Credit: McDonalds Ltd/Scurr Architects

It adds that the "application boundary" site area is 9,350sq m.

The proposed development on Leisure Way, Lowestoft.

The proposed development on Leisure Way, Lowestoft. - Credit: McDonalds Ltd/Scurr Architects

In December 2019, planning permission was granted for "construction of up to" 21 homes on "relatively flat vacant disused land" south of Leisure Way.

At the time of this application from Lawson Planning Partnership (LPP), submitted on behalf of Frostdrive Ltd, it was stated that the owner was looking to sell after getting permission.

Leisure Way in Lowestoft.

Leisure Way in Lowestoft. - Credit: Mick Howes

A "prime residential development site" on land south of Leisure Way, Lowestoft has been marketed for sale with property experts Whirledge & Nott for £850,000.

Land south of Leisure Way, Lowestoft has been marketed for sale with Whirledge & Nott

A "prime residential development site" on land south of Leisure Way, Lowestoft has been marketed for sale with property experts Whirledge & Nott. - Credit: Mick Howes

Planning permission had also been approved for a care home and leisure schemes in 2009 and 2011 despite opposition to applications lodged back then by Frostdrive Ltd.