One of Worcestershire’s most ambitious industrial and office schemes – the £70 million Redditch Gateway – has taken a step closer to becoming reality with the appointment of leading commercial property developers Stoford.
Marketing will now begin on the 70-acre site after the Birmingham-based firm was appointed as development partner to work alongside the two landowners, The Gorcott Trust and the Homes and Community Agency (HCA).
The development could create more than 1,500 jobs as accommodation of more than one million sq ft – including industrial and warehouse units alongside office space – is delivered.
The planning application is expected to be submitted to Stratford-upon-Avon District Council in September 2015. Infrastructure work could begin as early as summer 2016, with the first phase of development earmarked for completion in early 2017.
The Redditch Gateway scheme is bisected by the A4032 and is adjacent to the A435, close to Ravensbank Business Park, and to the Redd42 industrial unit Stoford delivered for occupier John Lewis.
Dan Gallagher, joint managing director of Stoford, said the agreement with the landowners marks a significant step forward in the plans to develop the site, which has been identified by Worcestershire County Council, and Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership (WLEP), as one of four key ‘gamechanger’ sites that will transform the region’s economic future.
“This is a very exciting scheme because it is one of the key employment sites that will make a substantial contribution to Worcestershire’s future economic prosperity,” he said.
“Such is the interest in Redditch Gateway that we are already talking to potential occupiers who are keen to take advantage of the site, which is close to both the M40 and M42 and will provide high quality accommodation.
“We are working hard to ensure that the site not only delivers in terms of numbers of jobs for the area but also that it maintains its rich biodiversity.”
The flexibility of the Redditch Gateway scheme means it could deliver industrial and office units from 10,000 sq ft to large distribution warehouse units of up to 300,000 sq ft.
Will Adams, from The Gorcott Trust, said: “The Trust is delighted by this appointment, which marks the culmination of many years of hard work to promote this well located site. I am confident that the collaboration between the landowners, Stoford, and the multiple local and country authorities involved, will make a positive contribution to the region’s economy.”
Christine Addison, the HCA’s executive director for the Midlands, said: “We have worked collaboratively with The Gorcott Trust and the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership to open this land up for development. The appointment of the developer is an important step towards creating a high quality site at Redditch Gateway, which will significantly increase the town’s ability to attract inward investment.”
Gary Woodman, executive director of the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership (WLEP), said: “Redditch Gateway is one of four key employment sites, also known as gamechanger sites, in Worcestershire that provide a wealth of commercial opportunities and will hugely benefit the county’s economy.
“It is therefore good news for Worcestershire that the important step has been taken in the appointment of property developers, Stoford. We look forward to working with them to bring forward the first development on the site.”
Stoford is a leading specialist in warehouse and distribution development. It has delivered over 10 million sq ft of pre-let development and in 2012 to 2014 had more than 1.5 million sq ft of pre-let space under construction throughout the UK.