Plans to build a Costa Coffee store on Chalfont St Peter's high street were given the go-ahead by Chiltern District Council on Tuesday (June 11).
After receiving planning permission, the British coffeehouse is to set up shop at 59 – 61 St Peters Court, High Street.
According to the council, the site, which has remained vacant since 2014, will become a “generator of footfall and activity” and will soon provide up to 12 full-time jobs.
In the proposals, a spokesperson explained the reasons behind giving the green light to the new Costa Coffee store.
They said: “High streets are changing and the demands that people place upon them and what they expect to see have changed significantly.
“The pressures of internet shopping on the demand for high street units are only just beginning to be felt.
“High streets are becoming more about services and activities as opposed to comparison shopping, of which there is a considerable increase of online activity for.
“The proposed use is a proven generator of footfall and activity, providing both a complimentary and beneficial use for the high street.”
According to Savills, which submitted the proposals, in the two years the site has been on the market, the agents received a number of local enquiries, the most promising of which was in March 2015 from a Motor spares Retailer.
The deal with the motor shop did not proceed and, following that, Costa Limited began negotiations with the council in September 2016.
On a Chalfont St Peter Facebook page, local residents expressed mixed opinions about the coffeehouse coming to their town.
One said: "Let's hope it doesn't have a detrimental effect on the likes of Crumbs who've worked hard to build up a great coffee place."
"Don't like the thought of another big chain," another commented, "but this shop has sat empty for many years, so it will look better."
Another local thought the plans were "ridiculous" and added: "Keep the independents! Council what are you up to."
However, some were positive about the plans and said: "That's brilliant news! Chalfont St Giles's Costa is perfect and busy."
The opening hours of the premises are likely to be between 6.30am and 8pm on weekdays and Saturdays, with reduced hours of 8am to 6.30pm on Sundays and Bank Holidays.
A date has not currently been set for the development to begin but the planning permission will expire within three years of being received.
Jason Cotta, managing director at Costa Retail UK and committee member of the Future High Streets Forum, supported the new development and said it will play an "integral" role in the high street.
“Coffee shops have effectively become more than just a place to enjoy a hot drink," he said.
"They play an integral role in terms of the socio and economic development of the high street - from employment opportunities to providing friendly community meeting hubs.
"As a panel member of the Future High Streets Forum, we have been working closely with local councils to revive and develop their high streets.
"I welcome the findings of this report which reinforces the role of coffee shops in driving footfall to the high street, as well as helping to improve the viability of the area.
For more information on the new Costa Coffee in Chalfont St Peter, head to the council's website.