Firms snap up space at light industrial development

Nearly half of an energy-saving light industrial scheme has been pre-let during construction at Thorp Arch Estate, near Wetherby.

40% of the £8m latest phase of Ash Way, which provides free electricity to occupants through roof-mounted photovoltaic (PV) panels, was pre-let during the 11-month construction period with a further 40% with solicitors or under offer.

The speculative development of nine light industrial units, totalling 93,409 sq ft, built for estate owner, Patrizia Hanover Property Unit Trust, has been constructed to be operationally carbon net zero for a typical warehouse occupier.

Units also feature audible water leak detection systems, PIR (passive infra-red) sensor-operated LED lighting in both office and warehouse areas and electric vehicle (EV) charging points.

Occupiers are using the new units mainly for distribution and include existing estate tenants, who are expanding, and companies relocating from Leeds, Harrogate, and York and nearby areas.

Wharfedale Property management director, Tim Munns, said: “Ash Way Phase IV’s construction started before the Ukraine conflict triggered the spike in fuel prices and cost-of-living crisis and the green technologies will enable tenants to significantly reduce operating costs.

“Businesses attracted to the scheme are interested in its high specification, which includes full fibre with true on-site resilience; PIR operated LED lighting throughout as well air circulation, heat recovery and air conditioning systems for the offices.

“There is strong interest in the remaining units, which we expect to let soon and will vindicate the speculative development and provide confidence for similar schemes.”

The development, built by Castlehouse Construction, Leeds, and managed by property and construction consultants, LHL Group, York, comprises individual units ranging from 4,031 sq ft to 31,647 sq ft.

Thorp Arch Estate, a former war time munitions factory offering two million sq ft of commercial premises, is the base for more than 170 businesses, from small enterprises to large plcs, employing more than 2,000 people.

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