Retailer Next set to secure planning for ecommerce hub

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Wakefield Council is minded to approve plans for NEXT to expand its West Yorkshire operations with a new 1.2 million ft2 warehouse and distribution unit in order for it to service its growing online offering.

Next submitted a full planning application to Wakefield Council last year for development on a 77-acre plot of land south of Field Lane in South Elmsall.

Next currently occupies two units on Elmsall Way, north of Field Lane, and secured planning for an 852,000ft2 unit known as E3 in 2020. This application is for the construction of a fourth facility, known as E4, measuring about 1.21 million ft2, which would be connected to E3 via a bridge.

The planning report said: “The applicant has explained that the development is required to accommodate projected growth in their ecommerce business which cannot be met by their existing South Elmsall warehouse facilities, which are operating at capacity, and that the additional warehouse space which will be required to service the anticipated level of growth significantly exceeds the additional capacity which will be introduced through the E3 development, necessitating the development of E4.

“The applicant wishes to meet the project growth by expanding their existing warehousing operation in South Elmsall rather than building a new unit elsewhere and considers that doing so will bring significant additional benefits in terms of efficiency of operation/synergies which could not be achieved elsewhere.”

NEXT is looking to invest £125 million in the new facility which could provide between 500 – 1,000 additional jobs.

The application will go before the council’s planning committee on 7th July and is recommended for approval.

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