Nicola Sturgeon says more drive-thrus in Glasgow make no sense

Nicola Sturgeon Starbucks <i>(Image: Newsquest)</i>
Nicola Sturgeon Starbucks (Image: Newsquest)

Nicola Sturgeon has said "it makes no sense" to approve more drive-thrus in Glasgow.

The southside SNP MSP said it will not help in efforts to reduce pollution and ease congestion, instead, it will have the opposite effect.

The former first minister, writing in the Glasgow Times today, said she wants to see a bid to build a new drive-thru Starbucks in Gorbals turned down.

Sturgeon was writing about measures to tackle climate change and reduce pollution in Glasgow.

She backed the implementation of the Low Emission Zone (LEZ) but widened her comments to discuss the need for a fully joined-up approach and questioned the increasing number of drive-thrus in the city.

The MSP said: “Even though it has some of the lowest levels of car ownership in the UK, Glasgow has more drive-thru restaurants than other cities - indeed, the Gorbals already has a Costa drive-thru.

“It makes no sense to give the go-ahead to yet more outlets that encourage people into cars rather than out of them, cause local congestion, add to pollution, and offer no obvious benefits to the communities they are located in.”

Sturgeon said the outlets bring no wider benefit to the community.

She added: “Anyone who argues that someone driving to the Gorbals to pick up a latte at a drive-thru is then going to park the car and shop locally is, to put it mildly, kidding themselves on.

“So, I hope this application is rejected – for the sake of the Gorbals but also in the interests of joined-up policy.”

Euro Garages is seeking permission to build a drive thru for Starbucks in Crown Street, Gorbals.

It has been met with opposition, including from a local church and Glasgow Labour MSP Paul Sweeney who said it was “absurd”.

Last year the council passed a new policy that would tighten rules for opening new drive-thrus and allows councillors to reject them on grounds of pollution and congestion.

The Conservatives on the council said the change was “bonkers”.