Norwich enterprise park plans get backing from planners

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Sign for Broadland District CouncilImage source, Evelyn Simak/Geograph
Image caption,
Planners at the council have approved plans for Broadway Enterprise Park

A multi-million pound enterprise park has been given approval by planners.

Broadland District Council planning committee unanimously approved the application to develop the site - roughly the size of 37 rugby pitches - near Norwich Airport.

The Broadway Enterprise Park will be used for offices and industrial warehouses and the developer said it would create 1,000 jobs.

Concerns were raised about more office space with people still hybrid working.

The plans for the site, which covers 92 acres (372,311sq/m), also include a filling station, two drive-through restaurants, a car showroom and a park and ride development.

At the planning meeting, Conservative councillor John Fisher questioned the need for a 1,000-space park and ride with another site currently less than two miles away.

Mr Fisher said: "At the moment you can park anywhere in Norwich - every car park is half empty.

"With the developments of Covid and people not travelling to work as they used to, what would be the alternative?," he said.

An officer said there was a "degree of uncertainty" to the park and ride and if it did not happen an alternative use would be found for the land.

Ahead of the meeting, Norwich City Council objected to the plan, arguing that having office space out of the city could undermine the centre.

Comments were also received from three residents, who argued the development was out of keeping with the rural area, reported the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

Paul Knowles, director of Building Partnerships, the group behind the plans, said the scheme would deliver the council's employment and economic development aspirations in the area.

Mr Knowles said they expected only about 10% of the employment space would be used for offices, partly because of Covid reducing demand.

The exact layout and uses of the park are expected in future applications, although a recycling centre has already been built on the site by Norfolk County Council.

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