Developer dbSymmetry has unveiled plans to speculatively build 800,000 sq ft of warehouse space nationwide in 2017.
According to Savills’ latest UK warehouse survey, this figure equates to 21% of the total 3.8 million sq ft set to be delivered this year.
Development Director, Christian Matthews said: “We have identified strategic sites throughout the UK, where there is a severe shortage of logistics space available.”
Speculative development is planned for sites owned in Swindon, Blyth, Middlewich, Banbury and Bicester.
Construction for a 217,000 sq ft warehouse in Swindon is due to start in May and will form the first phase of Symmetry Park Swindon, which extends to almost 100 acres and has planning for 1.3 million sq ft of logistics warehouse space.
Matthews said: “Having assessed the market, the decision to build speculatively in Swindon without having identified an end user was an easy one to make; supply levels are at an all time low and with demand ever increasing we believe it is the optimum time to press the button.
“With planning now secured, we are looking to start on site in May with practical completion due in December.”
Tim Davies from Colliers International, joint agents for the scheme with Savills, said: “Swindon has already attracted many global companies, and with rents and labour costs being so competitive compared to other locations we anticipate lots of interest for the building.”
Rob Cleeves of Savills commented: “Large-scale logistics buildings in excess of 100,000 sq ft are a key part of the Swindon market and have accounted for 35% of take up over the last five years. 2016 was a record year with four deals over 200,000 sq ft.”
The 2017 Industrial and Logistic rents map from Colliers International showed that Swindon experienced the biggest surge in rents for large warehouses in the last year with prices rising by 20 per cent.
Cllr Garry Perkins, Swindon Borough Council’s cabinet member for the Economy, Regeneration and Skills, said: “It is exciting to see work start on site at the largest of Swindon’s new development areas. The New Eastern Villages will deliver about 8,000 homes in the next 10 years, and Symmetry Park will provide jobs and supporting infrastructure that will benefit existing and new residents.
“The warehouse is in a key location with direct access on to the A420, and will benefit from being right next to the New Eastern Villages District Centre which will provide additional employment, retail, leisure and healthcare facilities along with additional transport infrastructure.”
Once it is fully completed and operational, Symmetry Park is expected to create between 500 and 1,000 jobs.