Barnsley Council’s planning board yesterday (July 5) voted to approve the plans, which will see the unit built on land formerly used as Rockingham Colliery at Hoyland’s Gateway 36 scheme.
Located between the Rockingham and Shortwood Roundabouts, the scheme will see one large single building, to the west of a new access road.
A service yard and space for 55 HGV parking spaces will be located to the rear of the building, and 315 parking spaces are also proposed – 32 of which would have EV charging points
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However, Rockingham’s Conservative councillor Dave White, who voted against the plans, warned that Birdwell Roundabout ” is not fit for purpose even now”.
Coun White told the meeting that the proposal would add “significant traffic” to Birdwell roundabout.
Speaking after the meeting, Coun White added that “Birdwell roundabout is not fit for purpose even now, and that additional lorries and out of town employees travelling here will add to the traffic problems that the roundabout faces.
However, Joe Jenkinson, head of planning at at Barnsley Council, said improvement works to the roundabout ensured that it is “fit for purpose” for future schemes.
“Cumulative impact assessments will always assume a worst case scenario,” he added.
“Because of the works that were undertaken to Birdwell Roundabout four or five years ago, and because of the the level of engagement with National Highways at that time, we ensured that the scheme that was built was fit for purpose to deal with congestion issues then, but also have the capacity to accommodate what we’re seeing coming forward now.”
A report by planning officers, presented to the planning board, adds that “specific occupiers are not known at the present time”, but the development will “lead to significant investment and new employment opportunities at both the construction and operational stage.”
Enterprising Barnsley commented on the application, stating that the scheme is “essential in helping BMBC and Sheffield City Region create future employment opportunities as per the existing strategic and corporate plans as well as contributing to a jobs lead recovery from Covid.”