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13/12/2017

Plans for Westminster to tackle fast-food delivery app

Words: Laura Edgar
Uber Eats / Shutterstock_617577323

Westminster City Council’s City Plan is set to introduce new rules that would compel restaurants offering fast-food deliveries through companies like Deliveroo and Uber Eats to apply for planning permission.

Recently, the council took planning enforcement action against a branch of Nando’s in Westbourne Grove following complaints from residents about being disturbed by large groups of moped delivery drivers waiting for orders.

Over several weeks, the council said several of its officers had observed large numbers of mopeds parking inappropriately, making noise and causing congestion outside the restaurant. As a result, the council issued a notice for the branch of Nando’s to stop providing deliveries.

Westminster City Council’s new city plan will introduce a new policy to support this kind of action.

Restaurants providing large numbers of deliveries through delivery apps “to the point they are no longer a secondary use,” the council explained, will have to apply for planning permission for the change of use, as well as demonstrate that they minimise disruption in local neighbourhoods.

If they do not abide by these rules they could become subject to formal enforcement action.

Westminster City Council cabinet member for planning and public realm Daniel Astaire said: “We have nearly 3,000 restaurants in Westminster and the council needs policies to keep up with new technology, ensuring that areas can cope with the increased demand for food deliveries. Left unchecked, this will create traffic chaos.

“These apps provide a fantastic service and we understand that for every delivery driver there is a customer. It is a popular, much-needed service, but we can’t allow the city to be swarmed with delivery drivers.

“We already make effective use of our planning powers. Having a policy will strengthen our hand in managing the flow of deliveries in the city, tackling noise disturbances and antisocial behaviour.”

Image credit | Shutterstock

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