This morning St Edmundsbury Borough Council granted outline planning consent for the major 114-acre Suffolk Park business scheme at Bury St Edmunds, adjacent to the new Eastern Relief Road leading to Junction 45 of the A14 which will accommodate up to 2 m sq ft of business, distribution and industrial space.
The St Edmundsbury Development Control Committee granted JAYNIC, as development promoter, outline consent for B1 (office, research & development and light industrial) and B8 (warehousing, storage and distribution) development, together with reserved matters approval for the main internal road linking the Eastern Relief Road with Lady Miriam Way South plus site-wide framework landscaping. The site has Enterprise Zone status on 35 acres.
The outline consent includes some B2 (manufacturing) space on the 10-acre site pre-sold to Treatt at the beginning of this year, which will be the subject of a separate reserved matters application shortly. Treatt, a leading beverage ingredient solutions manufacturer, has been located in Bury St Edmunds since 1971. The company is currently located across seven acres and six separate units in Northern Way and will consolidate its operations into a new 200,000 sq ft global headquarters facility to be constructed within the Enterprise Zone. Further B2 development may be possible for named occupiers, subject to planning.
A spokesman for St Edmundsbury Borough Council said:
“This is a significant step in successfully bringing forward this major employment allocation on the east side of Bury St Edmunds. The Council has worked hard to achieve this, loaning money to developers to design the Eastern Relief Road, investing money in the road itself and negotiating the land deals. We then worked with New Anglia LEP to secure Enterprise Zone status for 14 hectares of the Suffolk Business Park offering Business Rate incentives over a 25-year period, to encourage both the expansion of existing busi-nesses that previously may have been considering locating away from the area in or-der to find the space to grow, and to entice new businesses to the St Edmundsbury area. All of this is part of our strategic priority to enable economic growth, lifting skills and expertise across West Suffolk and with it levels of pay, creating new opportunities for younger people as they leave education.”
Chris Starkie, Managing Director of New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, says:
“Suffolk Park offers enormous potential for inward investment and economic growth – that’s the reason the LEP invested £10m to link the site directly to the A14 and selected it for Enterprise Zone status. Planning consent takes the site to the next stage, allowing more businesses to benefit from discounted business rates, simplified planning and Superfast broadband and from the excellent infrastructure Suffolk Park will soon have.”
Daemmon Reeve, Treatt’s Group CEO comments,
“We are very excited about the development of our new global headquarters. Our results are showing substantial progress year on year with new business wins and a strong performance across all our categories. We employ around 200 staff and having operated here for nearly 50 years we were very keen to remain in Bury St Edmunds, particularly in view of the commitment to business growth by St Edmundsbury Borough Council, the New Anglia LEP and other stakeholders. The planned investment of between £21 and £31 million (net of disposing of the current site) will enable us to have facilities which are not only very impressive but are also fit for purpose for the future.”
Jonathan Lloyd of Hazells, agents on the scheme comments that
“there is strong demand for business and distribution space in Bury St Edmunds being that it is located on the strategically important A14 east/west cross route into the UK motorway system.”
The adopted masterplan for Suffolk Park provides for a high quality, well landscaped business park with careful consideration given to building design and outside storage. A key element of the consent is landscaping. The existing landscape features, includ-ing the principal trees and hedgerows will be substantially retained and within the development plots planting will be used to soften the frontages and provide enclosure for parking areas. A landscaping strategy is to be formulated to ensure con-sistency in the planting and in the species used. Native species will be used where possible. This will ensure that landscape is an integral part of plot design and result in a consistent appearance throughout the development.
Also, sustainability plays an important part in the plans including a requirement that facilities are installed in all new premises that allow for staff to walk and cycle to work. A new cycle/footway link will be created from the A14 underpass along the western boundary of the site to the Sybil Andrews Academy. This includes widening and resurfacing the cycleway along Lady Miriam Way South and introducing a new section linking the underpass to the southern section of Lady Miriam Way South.
JAYNIC has already gone out to tender for the infrastructure works with the intention of having the chosen contractor on site so that the main estate road between the Eastern Relief Road and Lady Miriam Way and associated infrastructure works are completed by the end of 2017. Individual occupier’s buildings, subject to reserved matters approval can commence whilst the infrastructure works are ongoing. This means companies could be in occupation and operational early in 2018.
“We are grateful for the active support and assistance of St Edmundsbury that has enabled us to present a planning application that could be granted planning consent within only three months. This consent proves that Suffolk Park is a reality. It is currently the only major allocated employment site in Bury St Edmunds with an outline planning permission. We have already sold a substantial site to major local company and talks are progressing with other interested parties. The site is unique in the town and region for the scale of buildings it can offer. Occupiers requirements for buildings from 10,000 sq ft up to 700,000 sq ft can now be accommodated within 12-15 months from now.”
Nic Rumsey – JAYNIC