A PROJECT to expand the industrial estate around Coventry Airport is closer to breaking ground after contractors were appointed.
Civil engineering firm Buckingham has taken on the £140 million build for ‘Gateway South.’
The contract puts the controversial project in motion after nearly a decade of planning wrangles.
A larger proposal for the development had to be scrapped in 2015 after secretary of state Eric Pickles vetoed the application, citing green belt restrictions.
Warwick District Council then removed the area, north of Bubbenhall, from green belt designation in 2017.
Supported by Coventry City Council and Warwick District Council, the plans were put forward by the Coventry and Warwickshire Development Partnership, which is now part of property investor Segro.
Warehouses and a large park are set to be built on the land, mostly a former sewage works.
Earth from contaminated sewage sludge lagoons will be landscaped in bunds around the site.
Buckingham is already at work on the first phase of the major ‘Coventry Gateway’ scheme, on the Whitley South estate.
It said the combined Gateway scheme was one of its largest ever projects.
Ian McSeveney, director of Buckingham civil engineering group, said “We are delighted to have secured this exciting and challenging project. We look forward to continuing our relationship with Segro to deliver this major manufacturing and logistics development that could, when complete, create more than 5000 jobs.”
Andrew Pilsworth, director at Segro, said: “Gateway South, Coventry is truly an excellent location. It’s well-connected, close to major population centres and it’s one of a small number of sites that can accommodate our long-term vision of creating a high-quality industrial and logistics park.
“We’re pleased to count some of the biggest names in logistics and industrial amongst our valued customers. We look forward to engaging with them to make Gateway South, Coventry a great success in the coming years.”
Engineers expect the new industrial park to be built by 2024. It will sit alongside a landscaped 230-acre country park.