Decision on giant new warehouse off Newmarket Lane in Wakefield due next week
A decision on whether or not a gigantic new warehouse can be built close to land once earmarked for a community stadium is due next week.
Developers Mountpark Logistics want to build a storage and distribution centre, measuring two million square feet, on land off Newmarket Lane in the Stanley.
Wakefield Council's planning officers have acknowledged that the development would "dominate" the local skyline from certain points and result in the loss of biodiversity, but have nonetheless recommended the scheme be approved by councillors next Thursday.
It's claimed the warehouse would create up to 1,500 jobs for the local area and will "stimulate a positive economic change" for the area.
Planning applications linked to Newmarket Lane in recent years have been contentious, after a 12,000 seater community stadium was given planning permission in 2012, but then never built.
The venue would have been used by Wakefield Trinity, but the city's rugby league side are now set to stay at their current Belle Vue home and redevelop it instead.
A huge warehouse belonging to logistics operator Newcold is already present on the Newmarket Lane site and has been criticised for its size and appearance.
Just short of 50 objections have been tabled against the proposal, with critics citing the "ecological harm" and loss of green space that the development could inflict.
A report by officers, which will go before the council's planning committee at the meeting next week suggest however, that the proposal should go ahead.
The report said: "Although the jobs generated would be likely to be predominated by relatively low skilled/ paid warehouse operative roles, a number of higher skilled supervisory and technical roles would also be likely to be created.
"The development would result in the construction of a large new warehouse building which will dominate certain local views.
"However, it is considered that the proposed development design is of a suitable quality and that mitigation in the form of stand offs, cladding detailing and the substantial soft landscaping scheme for the site will prevent the development from being a strongly discordant or harmful landscape element, within the context of the existing Newcold warehouse and other urban features within the locality.
"Although the proposal would result in an overall biodiversity net loss, an extensive site landscaping scheme is proposed which would include significant amounts of new woodland planting, species rich grassland and wetland planting."
Local Democracy Reporting Service