Giant B&Q distribution centre gets go-ahead

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Property developer Gazeley has been granted reserved matters planning approval for the proposed 796,649 sq ft B&Q distribution centre at G.Park Swindon.

The facility on Plot A of the site is estimated to have a completed value of nearly £70m, and will bring 600 jobs to the area once fully operational.

In June, B&Q announced that it was is consolidating its distribution for the south of England at Swindon and closing five sites in the North West and Midlands.

The new distribution centre will handle high volume products. B&Q said it would bring “product closer to the stores therefore improving customer service as well as reducing transport miles, transport costs and CO2 emissions”.

It plans to bring in a third party logistics provider to run the new site and is expected to be fully operational by January 2012.

The sites that are to close are: Preston Brook near Runcorn; Coventry; Chepstow; Middleton in Manchester; and an existing site at Swindon which are all run by third party logistics suppliers.

G. Park Swindon will include a number of eco measures such as the harvesting and re-use of rainwater collected from the roof of the building and solar panels to heat the water. A solar wall will use renewable energy to heat and ventilate the building. The development will include substantial areas of new habitat around the building with the planting of about 500 new trees.

Nigel Godfrey, senior vice president of Gazeley UK, said: “We look forward to starting on site in the autumn and will complete the facility by next summer. As well as reducing the environmental impact of the development, Gazeley has sought to ensure that the building will deliver significant annual operating cost savings for B&Q through reduced energy consumption.”

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