Preston Council grants planning approval for new district centre
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A major district centre promising hundreds of new jobs and vital infrastructure has secured planning consent from Preston City Council.
The new district centre in Cottam, north Preston, will provide a new Aldi supermarket and a further 123,000 sq ft of retail and leisure uses, alongside 89 new homes.
The site, off Cottam Avenue and Tom Benson Way, is in an area of high housing growth and has been identified as a priority in the Central Lancashire core strategy, Preston’s Local Plan and the Preston City Deal.
Gary Goodman, of applicant BXB Cottam Properties, welcomed the decision, saying: “This will provide a major boost just as we are re-opening our economy and seeking to get people back to work.
“Our thanks go to the officers at Preston City Council for the constructive way they have approached what is a complex application.
“The site was formerly a brickworks and a landfill site and remediation is required.
We are already on site using our in-house expertise to clean up the land and make it ready for development, and now that full planning permission has been received we can bring our timetable forward,” he added.
Cottam and the surrounding area has been the focus of considerable housing growth in recent years.
Planning consultant Peter Tooher, of Nexus Planning, who advised BXB on the planning application, said: “This is a large site with a number of technical issues, but there has been a willingness from all sides to resolve them.
“Everyone saw the importance of providing key community infrastructure of this nature for the area’s rapidly growing population.
“It will also remove blight, create valuable jobs and services and generate vital income and receipts for the public sector.”
He added: “During the public consultation in November 2019, the feedback received was overwhelmingly positively with 91% of residents supportive of the development and the shops and services that would flow from it.”
Gary Goodman said he is in constructive discussions with Lancashire County Council and Homes England over the sale of a small parcel of land to complete the site and allow access from Tom Benson Way.
The development is forecast to generate 170 full time jobs for the area, with a further 271 jobs during the construction phase.
Economists predict that the scheme will generate an economic output of £41.7m a year and increase council tax revenue by £150,000 per annum.
The architects for the scheme are The Harris Partnership.