Business park to create jobs boost
HUNDREDS of jobs could be created as part of plans for a new business park on a neglected former railway line.
Developers have written to Stoke-on-Trent City Council asking for permission to build eight business units on land off Chatterley Road in Tunstall.
The units vary in size to provide between 100sqm and 200sqm of floor space and are designed to, 'help provide new business and employment opportunities in the area.'
A report to the city council's planning department by chartered accountants Jay Ashall Associates, on behalf of a private developer, says: "The design objective behind the proposals was to create a modern development of business units in an existing commercial area to cater for a variety of business uses.
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"The proposals will provide a new industrial park which will improve the economy and provide employment to the area throughout the lifetime of the development. They will rejuvenate this neglected piece of land and avoid the site becoming overgrown and unused, a prime target for vandalism and deterioration.
"The units provide adequate space and facilities for a comfortable and practical working environment and will create a strong sense of place through the creation of a mixed employment use, with many different businesses working together on the same site."
The report adds: "The site forms a strip of wasteland adjacent to the Trent and Mersey Canal.
"The site historically was used as a railway siding for a previous branch of the North Staffordshire train line and has since been left as vacant and unused wasteland since the Chatterley line and station closed in 1948."
Jane Gratton, deputy chief executive at North Staffordshire Chamber of Commerce, said: "North Staffordshire has excellent transport links together with affordable land and a committed workforce which makes it an attractive place for business to invest.
"For the economy to prosper and new jobs to be created, we need high quality employment sites and an ongoing range of business accommodation to meet the needs of our indigenous start-up firms.
"We also need speculative building for industrial and office uses if we are to continue to attract sizeable inward investment."
City Independents councillor Lee Wanger, who represents Tunstall, said: "It is in the right place. It is near to the Blue Planet, which is a warehouse and other similar businesses. But what concerns me is that it is close to Goldendale Pond. But provided it doesn't encroach on that, I would welcome it."