Planners set to approve £80m logistics hub

Plans for the £80m first phase of a plan to create a huge logistics hub at a former Liverpool city region coal mine will go before council planners on Tuesday. Tony McDonough reports

Phase one of the Parkside scheme will include three speculative logistics units


Council planners in St Helens will be asked to give the go-ahead to the £80m first phase of the Parkside Regeneration logistics scheme this week.

On Tuesday (March 12), a reserved matters planning application will be heard on the project which is looking to transform the former Parkside colliery in Newton-le-Willows into a huge logistics hub.

Parkside Regeneration is a joint venture between St Helens Council and developer Langtree. Pre-construction work on the project began in summer 2022.

Secretary of State for Levelling Up Michael Gove gave the green light to the scheme in November 2021. In May 2023 Parkside submitted a ‘reserved matters’ application. This means it includes details not included in the original outline application.

Subject to approval, design work will begin on two speculatively built units of 367,700 sq ft and 198,100 sq ft. Parkside will also look to identify a main contractor.

Details of a third unit are also being submitted as part of the application comprising a further 227,400 sq ft. Overall, the first phase development at Parkside could accommodate more than 1,300 workers.

“This is the hard-working, technical end of the process covering a myriad of details,” said Parkside Regeneration chairman John Downes.  “There has been a huge amount of work to reach this point.

“If permission is granted, then it starts the firing gun on the next stage of design and the tendering process for construction of the first phase.”

This first phase will benefit from the construction of the £40m Parkside Link Road, which connects the site to Junction 22 of the M6 motorway.

Once completed, phase one is expected to generate more than £2.2m in annual rates income for St Helens Council and add more than £80m of output per annum to the borough’s economy.

Cllr Kate Groucutt, St Helens Council’s Cabinet Member for Economy, Skills and Business, added: “Parkside will be a game-changing development for our borough, bringing jobs and opportunity to Newton-le-Willows and beyond.

“As a Freeport site we hope it will attract national and even international interest from firms hoping to occupy the units. This application is a key milestone for the partnership and follows extensive consultation and engagement with the community.”

Spawforths is the planning consultant for the scheme, with Curtins advising on highways, Fletcher Rae the architects and TPM Landscape the landscape architects. 4ward are the project managers.

Local companies keen to bid for works packages with the chosen main contractor can register their interest with St Helens Chamber by clicking here.

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