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Energy park plans recommended for refusal

 

    By Nicki Jakeman  
       
   

CONTROVERSIAL plans for a £200m energy park at the site of the former Hedon Aerodrome are to be heard at East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s Planning Committee on Thursday, November 14.

In a report to the committee by the council’s Director of Planning and Economic Regeneration, released yesterday, the outline planning application for the Yorkshire Energy Park is recommended for refusal ‘because it would be contrary to employment policies in the Local Plan and would result in the loss of part of a Key Open Area’.

In the last week the Sewell Group, the developers of the proposed energy park, announced a multimillion-pound programme of improvements on one of Hull’s main roads will be implemented if plans are given the green light by planners.

The team behind the proposed development also revealed flood resilience measures will be implemented if plans are approved.

The developers will be legally committed to deliver the programme of improvements to the A1033, which will include additional lanes and signaling to five junctions. The improvements will be delivered before the full business park becomes operational.

Under the traffic improvement plans, new footpaths and cycle paths will be delivered to improve access to Preston South and Hedon and a financial contribution will also be made to upgrade the South Holderness Rail Trail, a cycle path which runs between Hull and Holderness.

These points came as Highways England clarified its improved position via letter to East Riding of Yorkshire Council.

In the letter, which has been seen by developers and is included in the report to the planning committee, Highways England said: “It can be concluded that at this stage that the principles of what is trying to be secured for the application are appropriate.

“We are not currently in a position to formally lift our holding recommendation. However, we are sufficiently comfortable that the application can now be taken to planning committee.”

This confirmation from Highways England means that the detailed conditions can be addressed after a planning committee decision is made, which is standard practice for schemes of this scale at an outline planning stage.

The letter continued: “Should the committee be minded to approve the application, it can then be deferred to officers to formally approve, who will then work towards agreeing the Conditions and Section 106. Once these are agreed then Highways England will be in a position to replace the current holding recommendation with a recommendation that should planning permission be granted with conditions attached.”

In addition to highways improvements, developers say improved land drainage will be put in place.

The clarification from Highways England follows Natural England’s formal withdrawal of its objection to the proposed scheme earlier this month.

The developers also announced several new potential tenants have given support for the plans.

Among the interested parties is manufacturer and distributor of high-quality waste and recycling solutions Straight Manufacturing Ltd.

A letter of appointment has been signed with a project multi-utility provider and talks are underway with a Venture Capital Fund over the sale of two to three acres of the site to enable new energy businesses to grow.

Developers say Yorkshire Energy Park would create up to 4,480 jobs.

If planning is granted, Yorkshire Energy Park will include an energy centre, data centre and disaster recovery suite, space for established and start-up businesses, education, training and research facilities alongside associated short-stay accommodation, an outdoor building materials and testing facility, and sports facilities for the community.

Meanwhile, a pre-meeting is taking place on Monday, November 11, whilst a decision on the application will be made at the planning committee meeting on Thursday, November 14.

 
         
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