Work is due to start on Amazon Park at Heighington Lane, Newton Aycliffe, hailed as the UK’s greenest distribution park.
The scheme, on a 100-acre site, will total 1.4 million sq ft and will be able to provide units from 60,000 – 1 million sq ft using the very latest in environmentally sustainable building methods and energy management systems.
Planning applications have been submitted to Sedgefield and Darlington Borough Councils and, if the scheme is given the go-ahead, work is expected to start on the first phase of development later this summer, with completion due in 18 months’ time.
The overall scheme could take up to five years to complete, but real estate adviser Cushman & Wakefield, which is advising Merchant Place on the acquisition, planning, funding and letting of the scheme, is already looking for potential tenants.
Durham County Council Leader Albert Nugent said: “Major retailers, such as supermarkets and clothes shops, now require much larger premises closer to their markets, from which they can distribute goods quickly as part of their ‘just-in-time’ delivery systems. The Heighington Lane site is ideal in this respect.
“This is an exciting development which demonstrates that County Durham continues to be an attractive area for large-scale industrial development. This project will bring significant benefits in terms of jobs, and helps in our drive to create a varied economy in the county.”
Brian Allen, chief executive of Sedgefield Borough Council said: “This is great news for South West Durham. It shows how the local economy is growing and that investors have renewed confidence in the area due to its unique position in the region.
“We will be working closely with training and employment agencies in the locality to ensure that as many of the new jobs created as possible go to local people.”
Geoff Hunton of developer Merchant Place, said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Durham County Council, the County Durham Development Company and Sedgefield Borough Council.”