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Next stage of i54 extension ready to be signed off

By Richard Guttridge | Wolverhampton | Business | Published:

The latest stage of the huge i54 business park extension is due to be signed off by council bosses this week.

The i54 is being extended by 60 acres

Around 1,300 jobs will be created as part of the move to grow the site, on the border of Wolverhampton and South Staffordshire, by 60 acres.

Work is currently progressing on a new access road to the business park, home to Jaguar Land Rover and other major companies, and the city council is now set to approve the next phases of the scheme, which will see development plots created by the end of 2021.

Cabinet members will also be asked to approve the £22.75 million budget to complete the remaining parts of the extension.

Officials said the cost would be met through various funding schemes, including local enterprise partnerships and borrowing, which would be offset by business rates generated from the site.

The meeting will be held on Wednesday and members have been advised to wave through the latest stage of the project, which has been widely hailed by business chiefs.

Property Agents JLL and Bulleys have been appointed to market and promote the land in an effort to attract businesses to the new site. Both single and multiple unit warehouses will be available to cater for as many firms as possible.

A report ahead of the meeting revealed the i54 had lost out on a "significant international manufacturer" as it couldn't wait until the launch date.

The report continued: "Further inward investment enquiries have been received and as such the partners are committed to bringing forward the land to be in a position to accommodate high-value manufacturing occupiers.

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"It is essential that further enquiries are not lost and that the site is prepared for development at the earliest opportunity."

The aim is for the access road to be completed early next year, marking the end of the first step of the extension.

The report said: "Works commenced on site end of June with the access road contract incorporating site clearance, ecological habitat work, bridleway diversion and the main access road which is programmed to be substantively complete by March 2020."

Richard Guttridge

By Richard Guttridge
Investigations Editor - @RichG_star

Investigations Editor for the Express & Star.

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