Marks & Spencer has been tipped to build a massive distribution centre in Bradford, creating 2,500 jobs.
The one million sq ft mega shed will be built by ProLogis on land it owns on the former West Bowling Golf Club, which has been earmarked by Bradford Council as premier employment land.
A Planning Application is currently being prepared and due for submission shortly. Subject to receiving Planning Permission, ProLogis would expect to start work on preparing the 90-acre site off Rooley Lane by the end of this year.
The site will be built in phases, with the Marks & Spencer facility forming phase 1. This would take around 18 months to complete and Marks & Spencer would expect the unit to be fully operational by 2010.
On its ProLogis Park Bradford web site ProLogis said: “Around 2,500 jobs could be created in the main part of the development and between 3,000 – 3,500 jobs overall. These jobs will be across a broad spectrum of skills ranging from highly skilled technicians, IT operatives and managers, workers, drivers, semi-skilled operatives and office/call centre workers.”
Furthermore, a facility for the site will provide significant investment into the operation’s staff training and development, via a Training Academy – a training programme for all employees at the facility to ensure consistency of operating procedures and access to the latest best practice.
The announcement has been welcomed by Bradford Chamber as demonstrating another step forward in the district’s regeneration.
Chamber President Balbir Panesar said: “This announcement is great news for the people and businesses of Bradford. It makes great sense to put high quality distribution sites in such an area, so close to both the transport network and to a good pool of labour.
“The investment that is coming into the district, the increasing media attention on the name of Bradford – in a positive light – and the job opportunities that arise out of such activity all show that things are changing here.”
The scheme will also include a range of “Advanced Business and Enterprise Units”, suitable for small to medium sized businesses, local occupiers and national companies.
Tom Riordan, chief executive of Yorkshire Forward, said: “What makes the proposal even more welcome is its commitment to making the Bradford site as green as possible – which fits with our mission to reduce carbon emissions in the region and proves that major industry players are recognising the importance of environmental issues in their business.”
Dove Haigh Philips is advising ProLogis.