North Wales is a melting pot for industry and in the years to come the region could be looking at creating thousands of jobs for those living in the area, however, the ingredients needed to expand are at this time lacking…for now.
Out of the eight Growth Bid programmes, land and property is a key aspect to take North Wales to where it needs to be in regards to accommodating the growth projected with a successful bid. This programme will look at tackling the huge shortage of suitable sites for housing and commercial property in the region.
To show you just what we mean, here are some of the major developments that could take place and how we can either build, regenerate or restore sites that could become commercial or industrial hubs for not just North Wales, but the UK.
- Parc Bryn Cegin
- Location: Bangor
- Jobs Created: 2,000
A strategic site that has been ready for development for 15 years, by constructing buildings we can deliver supply chain businesses the opportunity to locate themselves to support the Wylfa Newydd site, as well as other projects in North-West Wales and would cost £12million.
- Bodelwyddan Strategic Park
- Location: Bodelwyddan
- Jobs Created: 3,000
Earmarked for 1,715 new homes, 9,500 m2 of employment floor space as well as new road links, care home, retail units and community infrastructure. This project would cost £22million and also have the added bonus of complimenting nearby employment parks at both St Asaph and Kinmel Park, it aims to be completed in 2021.
- Warren Hall
- Location: Broughton
- Jobs Created: 4,000
A site close to the A55, Warren Hall in Broughton has proposals for a mix use development site for up to 400 homes as well as a business park.
- Wrexham Technology Park
- Location: Wrexham
- Jobs Created: 1,500
The purpose of this project is to bring forward an extension to the current park. Additional brown field site is available for development but new road access is required but new road access is required together with improved junctions on the A483. Electricity grids and other new primary infrastructure could be delivered between 2022 and 2025.
Iwan Prys Jones, Programme Manager for the Ambition Board, says there is strong demand for sites and premises, particularly in Wrexham and Flintshire, and now more than ever in north west Wales after £20billion plans for Wylfa nuclear power station advanced in past weeks.
He said: "There is a severe shortage of suitable property in north Wales for businesses to locate. There is serviced land in north west Wales but very few good quality buildings for companies to move into, which if you take into context the supply chain for Wylfa Newydd that poses a problem.
Mr Prys-Jones said a case can be made for all of the sites to be given the green light, geographically and in terms of demand.
"If you were a business looking to move into North Wales and you wanted a good quality modern property of more 20,000 sq ft you're going to really struggle," he said.
"There has been sustained economic growth in North Wales over the past decade, especially in north east Wales. If this growth is to be sustained, the shortage of land and property must be addressed
"I think that's the core message we are hoping to achieve with this element of the Growth Bid, that there has to be a pipeline of sites and premises available."
He added: "We are proposing a partnership with the Welsh Government to bring money and expertise together to support the delivery of the pipeline of sites.
"There are some major sites allocated that have not come forward for development, these need to be unlocked for the benefit of the economy".
Those words were echoed by Gwynedd council leader Cllr Dyfrig Siencyn, Vice-Chair of the Growth Bid.
Unlocking land in the west of the region is vital, he says, to allow the area to capitalise on its potential and major investments such as Wylfa Newydd.
"What we need and what we have is a strong partnership across the whole of the public sector, including Welsh Government, to work with the private sector to capitalise on investment opportunities," said Cllr Siencyn.
"Put simply, our economy needs sites and premises to meet the demand for jobs.
"It's not just about roads, land and buildings, it's about changing lives by putting the right infrastructure in place. With the Growth Bid and subsequent Growth Deal, as part of the overarching vision for North Wales, that's what we are aiming to do."