Marina flats plan may be dropped
The Cottam Brickworks development, including a marina, but the apartments may be dropped
Published Date: 08 February 2010 By David Coates
Developers behind the £80m Cottam Brickworks scheme say they may have to redraw the plans.
Ian Rankin, chairman of Cottam Hall Properties, said it was looking at "an alternative layout" for parts of the scheme as it grapples with a growing list of cash demands for transforming the five-acre site in Preston.
He said these bills, which include £200,000 for a new bus service to run from the development, had "cast a shadow" over the viability of the scheme.
A planning application for the project, which includes a Tesco superstore, marina, flats and a nature reserve at land off Tom Benson Way, is due to be heard at Preston Council next month.
Mr Rankin said: "We have to count our pennies a bit more now than we had to when we started this and that is something we are addressing at the moment.
"Our planning application for the residential element of the scheme is for outline permission only, which gives us more flexibility.
"The residential element is the most unknown element of it due to the situation in the property market and it maybe we have to cut flats out, for example."
Asked whether the growing bills could derail the scheme, he added: "It is becoming more and more possible and we need to cut out the delays.
"It would be a mistake to think that just because Tesco and housing is involved there is an endless supply of money to keep us going."
He said changes to planning laws meant it has submitted further information to do with the ecology of the site, including rare greater crested newts, to its application.
But, even if it wins approval, work cannot start on site until Spring 2011 to prevent disturbing the protected amphibians.
Mr Rankin said: "This additional information should be submitted this week and should hopefully remove objections from the ecology lobby, but if those objections continue it all gets a bit cloudy.
"Providing there is a positive approach from all parties we should hope to clear objections by next month."
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Brickworks developer aims to preserve nature
Published Date: 21 March 2007
Developers at a proposed new £80m site in Preston have gone green after plans for a five-acre nature reserve were finalised.
A rare sight on building projects of this scale, it is hoped the reserve, with woodland and ponds, will maintain wildlife and plants at the huge Cottam brickworks development.
Great crested newts, which inhabit the site, are in danger of dying out as breeding ponds fail, a spokesman for the developers said, but the nature reserve, near homes and commercial units on the site, will ensure their survival.
Ian Rankin, chairman of developers Cottam Hall Properties said: "Over the years we have been working closely with the Environmental Research and Advisory Partnership to devise a reserve that provides the community with an educational and recreational feature.
"The added advantage of reserve is that it will provide important habitats for frogs, toads, newts, butterflies, dragonflies and orchids which will be managed and monitored so that the site retains its county wildlife value."
Mr Rankin said local schools will be to create an educational wildlife area for teachers and children, as well as a possible research facility for universities.
The nature reserve is near two primary schools – Holy Family and Ingol Primary School - and discussions are under way to extend the nature reserve into school grounds.
The Cottam Hall brickworks scheme is predicted to generate 700 jobs and would feature a new supermarket, homes, offices, pubs, restaurants and a 20-mooring marina.
A public exhibition of the whole site will be held at INTAG Community Centre on Whitby Avenue in Ingol on March 23 and 24. It is hoped a planning application will be submitted in April.
Published Date: 03 July 2009 By David Coates
Published by kind permission of Lancashire Evening Post
First look at £80m marina scheme
Artist’s impression of the waterside homes and shopping
complex earmarked to start at the end of the year
This is the dramatic £80m vision to transform a derelict wasteland in Preston
The canal side development will turn 28 acres of rubble into a supermarket, marina, housing development and nature reserve.
Plans to transform the Cottam Brickworks site, which has lain derelict and undeveloped for more than half a century, have been submitted to the city's council.
It is hoped work to decontaminate the former quarry, which has been filled with builder's waste in recent years, will get started this year, with construction work beginning within two years.
The project will safeguard the jobs of up to 100 builders at Preston construction firm John Turner and Sons, which stands to get an £8m boost from the deal.
The £80m plans include a massive Tesco supermarket as well as a marina complex, nature reserve and a combined development of housing and offices.
Ian Rankin, chairman of developers Cottam Hall Properties, said: "We have the decontamination work and work to develop a nature reserve on the site to do first, then the builders can get on site.
"Obviously any timescale is subject to many possible delays, but we are hopeful that the door could be opening to the new Tesco store within two or three years.
"We know from our previous consultations with local people there is a tremendous amount of support locally for the scheme, so we are hopeful we can get going soon."
John Turner managing director John Clarke, who bought the business from Mr Rankin in 2007, said it would be subject to "seasonal restrictions" on ecological issues, including removing Greater Crested Newts from the site.
He said it would also have a major project building infrastructure on site, including roads and sewers, which he expected to take around two years, with building work on the supermarket starting at the end of that period.
A Preston Council spokesman confirmed the application had been submitted by Cottam Hall Properties and Tesco with detailed plans submitted for the supermarket, marina and nature reserve, and an outline proposal for the housing and office developments.
The Elsie Finney House care home, which is part of the scheme, opened at the end of last year.
It could take up to four months for the application to go before the council's planning committee for approval.
A Tesco spokesman said: "Tesco is delighted to be part of this major regeneration."
Julie Buttle, who represents Lea on Preston Council, said she hoped to use the authority's Citizenzone bus to take the plans into the community.
Ingol ward councillor Bill Shannon said: "It is great news that the application has now gone in but as with all these things, the devil is in the detail.
"We shall look at the plans and if there is any issues regarding parking, traffic and the construction process.
Published Date: 27 July 2009 By Emma Broom, Chief Reporter
Published by kind permission of Lancashire Evening Post
Almost 200 homes to be built on brickworks
An artist's impression of the marina planned for Cottam brickworks
Hundreds of new homes will be built alongside a Tesco supermarket and a marina on the site of a former Lancashire brickyard.
Precise details of the plans to transform the one-time Cottam Brickworks in Preston have finally been unveiled – more than seven years after a similar project was shelved.
Tesco and Cottam Hall Properties Limited want outline planning permission for 168 flats and maisonettes, plus 37 houses, along with offices, a pub and space for restaurants, cafes and a bank on the 34-acre site.
An area has also been set aside for a community building such as a church or crèche.
And, as expected, they also want to build a large superstore and petrol station, a nature reserve and marina.
Today, people living close to the Cottam Avenue site in Ingol, were urged to have their say on the project during public consultation events next month.
Coun Christine Abram, who represents the Lea ward, which includes Cottam, said: "It's up to people to turn out and ask the questions and we'll listen and take the comments on board.
"It's a golden opportunity for people to have their say. It's important to get it right.
"I think it should be positive for the area, but my concern is the route from Cottam to it because people have got to cross Tom Benson Way. We need a safe route for people to walk with pushchairs and children and dogs, above ground and well-lit.
"We've had fatalities on Tom Benson Way and we've got problems with the traffic."
Similar plans were rejected in 2002 because of fears it would have conflicted with proposals for Cottam Way and would have destroyed wildlife.
Coun Bill Shannon, who represents Ingol, said: "I'm delighted, after all these years, it's reached this stage. I think the devil's in the detail. I don't think there's any doubt at all the community welcomes the development."
The public can see the plans on board the Citizenzone bus, speak to planners and councillors, and air their views at Cottam Community Centre in Haydocks Lane between 6pm and 8pm on Tuesday, August 11. The matter will also be discussed at a PACT meeting at St Margaret's Church Hall in Tag Lane, Ingol, from 6pm on August 5.
Preston Council's planning committee will decide whether or not to approve the proposals in the next few weeks.
Published Date: 13 August 2009 By Melanie Wallwork
Traffic fears over £80m plan
An artist's impression of the Cottam Brickworks development
Hundreds of residents turned out to give their views on the £80m Cottam Brickworks development.
Locals packed into the Preston Council's Citizenzone bus, outside Cottam Community Centre, Haydocks Lane, over several hours to find out more about the housing and leisure complex plans.
Residents expressed their concern over the increase in traffic the proposed homes, offices and Tesco store will bring to the area.
Amanda Threlfall, of Millersgate, who works at BAE Systems, said: "I think the idea of it is good and needed for the area but I'm concerned about the extra traffic. It already backs up onto the main road from the tip at the weekends. And on Tom Benson Way, there's already been a serious accident.
"And the offices won't have parking so it will end up like around Asda."
The development will be accessed through an entrance off Tom Benson Way and another entrance, off Cottam Avenue, will be reserved for buses.
Robert Cavies, 62, who has lived on Cottam Avenue for 25 years, said: "I am dead against this. There's not enough room to park cars and get a bus through.
"They are saying there will be traffic restrictions which means that people won't be able to park their cars outside their houses."
Representatives from Tesco, planning consultants DPP, architects Cassidy and Ashton, and Preston councillors were on hand to answer questions.
Jackie Best, of Wiltshire Mews, who was there with son Andrew, 14, said: "The only thing that's bothering me will be increase in traffic."
Christine Capstick, who has lived in Cottam for 15 years, said: "I can't see the point in offices when there are empty ones all over Preston. And if it's going to be agreed on then I do worry about the traffic."
Coun Christine Abram, who lives in Cottam, said of the consultation: "It's important because if they don't come down and tell us what they like and dislike, then it's going to be difficult down the line."
The plans are expected to be considered by planning bosses within the next four months.
Development plans anger residents
Published Date: 17 August 2009 By Matthew Squires
Article by kind permission of the Lancashire Evening Post
John Lamb, from Ingol, has raised a petition against plans
for office blocks on the former Cottam Brickworks
Plans for an £80m retail, home and office complex could transform part of the Lancashire city of Preston into "another Fulwood," community leaders and residents claim
Homeowners fear the ambitious Cottam Brickworks development could spark traffic hell in surrounding streets unless parking concerns are addressed.
The development includes plans for office blocks, but there are fears there will not be enough parking spaces for workers. Preston Council planning committee is expected to consider the proposals soon.
In his official representation on the scheme to planning bosses Ingol Coun Bill Shannon says he supports the scheme and believes "the great majority of residents of my ward will also welcome this development."
But he also raises concerns which he says must be "addressed".
He adds: "Having regard to the well known parking problems at Eastway employment area, we will need reassurance that office car parks will be adequate for likely usage, not merely that they meet some unrealistic government target aimed at persuading employees not to use cars.
"If there are insufficient spaces cars will inevitably spill over onto the shoppers' car park and surrounding residential areas."
Resident John Lamb, who lives near the proposed development in Dunoon Close, Ingol, says he has collected more than 400 signatures from residents worried the development will spark an explosion of traffic.
He will present them to planning bosses before the application is considered.
He said: "It will be like another Fulwood here if these offices go ahead.
"They are likely to park around Dunoon Close and Whitby Avenue in Ingol. The majority would park at Cottam Way, The Evergreens, The Gables, Valentines Meadow and Millersgate.
"People who signed my petition do not want 20 miles of double yellow lines which will devalue properties."
No-one from developer Cottam Hall Properties was available for comment.
Delays could sink marina dream
An artist's impression of the marina project
Article by kind permission of Lancashire Evening Post
Published Date: 14 December 2009 By David Coates
An £80m shopping mecca which would create 800 new jobs was today in limbo.
The Cottam Brickworks development – which would revive a derelict part of Preston – has been put on hold. Work was expected to begin on a Tesco superstore, marina, flats and a nature reserve off Tom Benson Way in Spring 2010.
But it is now not expected to start until at least a year later after being hit by a string of delays. And the boss of developers Cottam Hall Properties today warned if fresh cash demands surrounding the scheme were made it could sink it altogether.
It has already stumped up £2m to bankroll schemes linked to the ambitous five-acre transformation.
But council bosses are demanding £200,000 to pay for a bus service to the site before it can go for approval – leading to fears the project is being "held to ransom".
And today, community leaders also warned Tesco could walk away if it is delayed any further.
Chairman Ian Rankin said: "I think everyone should be aware that the project is already carrying heavy contributions to the public purse, to public amenity and to the environment.
"Circumstances now are very different from those when the project was conceived and a line has to be drawn under the demands made on this project. The development may already have to be deferred and further demands can only increase that possibility.
"Major benefits have to be borne in mind to give perspective to expensive wish list items. This development will provide many hundreds of jobs at a time when they are most needed, a rare quality of life for hundreds of new residents and raise the quality of life in neighbouring communities.
"Further hurdles should be very carefully considered before being put in the path of this project in the wider interests of Preston. "I would urge people go cottamhall.co.uk website and just look at what opportunities this development can bring."
He said there was only "a glimmer" of hope that a related application for the neighbouring waste recycling site could now progress, but admitted the chances of getting work started early next year was "fading".
The developer had previously said the application had to get the go-ahead from Town Hall planners last month to start ecological work on site to avoid clashing with the "migration" of endangered Greater Crested Newts on the site.
It is not expected to be heard at the council's planning committee meeting until February.
Coun Christine Abram, who lives just yards from the development site, said: "They (Tesco) could very easily say, 'I have had enough of this' and go somewhere there is less problems and that would be an absolute disaster for the area'."
Bill Shannon, who represents Ingol on the council, said he believed the application would be heard in February but feared that could be too late.
He said: "Every week which goes by when the scheme is not happening further increases the risk that someone could walk away and put an end to the whole thing.
"We cannot allow this scheme, the 800 jobs it will bring and the millions of pounds of investment to be held to ransom."
Andy Whitlam, transport projects officer at Lancashire County Council, confirmed it has asked the developer to stump up for changes to the service, which it subsidises.
Tesco said it had nothing to add to Mr Rankin's comments.