Site ID: 745
Site Assessment Pro Formas
Representation ID: 4516
Respondent: Mrs Lucy Crawford
The site is within 400m of a station and is not on good quality agricultural land. I believe it is a sustainable location for growth.
Site Assessment Pro Formas
Representation ID: 8579
Respondent: AW Group Limited
Agent: Arrow Planning Limited
5.1 The Broadmead Site has been submitted as a 96ha site for strategic employment development. At this scale, it would be capable of delivering in the region of 335,000sqm of gross employment floor space in an excellent location for strategic employment growth.
5.2 The site is promoted as part of the wider scheme put forward by Cloud Wing known as Bedford Business Park; however, it is also capable of coming forward separately in the event that Bedford Business Park did not progress. The Site is in a single ownership, is available and is deliverable, being actively promoted by AWG in conjunction with Cloud Wing. It is not reliant upon any third parties and would be capable of “consuming its own smoke” in terms of infrastructure, as well as being delivered in the Bedford Business Park. The Site could, therefore, be delivered early within the plan period as evidenced by the live planning application across the entire Bedford Business Park.
5.3 Located adjacent to the railway line, the Broadmead Site is in a sustainable location where it can be accessed by sustainable, non-vehicular means of transport. Employees and visitors could access the site by rail (including the future East-West Rail station), whilst it is also a commutable cycling distance from Stewartby, Wixams and Wootton.
5.4 The land falls within all of the aforementioned Development Options and would contribute to meeting those needs. This can be best done as part of the wider Bedford Business Park, and is included within the live planning application for Bedford Business Park.
5.5 The Council’s assessment of the Site (ID 745 on its own, ID809 as part of the Bedford Business Park) in the Site Assessment Pro Formas (June 2021) document has been carried out at a higher level of assessment than the Local Plan. The submitted planning application demonstrates that there are no overriding constraints to development that would preclude the scheme proposals from coming forward.
5.6 The application addresses all technical areas, but in particular matters such as: landscape and visual impact; minerals; agricultural land; flood risk and drainage; utilities; ecology; and highways. The more detailed level of scrutiny that the application is subject to (and far more detailed evidence and assessments) supersede the high-level comments contained in the Site Assessment Pro Formas.
5.7 As renewable energy providers, AWG confirm that development here can make an important contribution to responding to climate change. Strategic employment developments include large expanses of roof space, which can be designed to accommodate solar panels to help meet the energy demands of the development.
5.8 They are also increasingly designed with electric vehicle charging infrastructure, including for HGVs as well as employee/visitor cars.
5.9 The site is in a sustainable location adjacent to a railway station, and accessible by cyclists and pedestrians from nearby settlements. It would therefore not be reliant upon private vehicles for access, helping to minimise vehicle emissions.
5.10 The level of analysis and assessment contained in the application, which covers the entirety of the Broadmead Site, is far greater than would normally be found for sites being assessed at this stage of the Local Plan process. The work confirms the suitability of the site and that there are no technical constraints preventing it from progressing through the various stages of the Local Plan. Indeed, it should be proposed as an allocation in the Local Plan as the Review document is prepared.
5.11 The proposed Bedford Business Park, which includes the land at Broadmead, should therefore be allocated for employment development within the Local Plan to meet identified needs throughout the whole plan period.