DP World to help fund A13 widening after striking planning deal with council (From Thurrock Gazette)
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DP World to help fund A13 widening after striking planning deal with council
SUPERPORT bosses have sealed a deal with Thurrock Council which means they will help finance the £85million widening of the A13, the Gazette can reveal.
This comes after months of negotiations, and the plan would see the key road open up to three lanes.
As part of the deal the council will ensure big companies do not have to wade through planning red-tape to get a spot on the 860,000 square metre London Gateway Logistics Park at the port.
The Local Development Order - due to be agreed by council last Wednesday - was delayed after the council and port bosses failed to reach an exact agreement for A13 funding.
But on Tuesday, the council announced it had struck a deal with the port’s owners and a special council meeting has been hastily arranged to agree the special order.
It is thought DP World will contribute about ten per cent to the cost of the A13 scheme, one of a number of benefits the council has agreed with the money-rich firm.
Others include the council receiving £1.45 for every metre of warehousing floor-space on the site and funding each time one of the six berths opens.
Additional funding for the A13 scheme will still need to be secured from the Government.
Councillor Andy Smith, in charge of regeneration at Thurrock Council, said: “This is a wide-ranging agreement, taking into account such things as permanent training facilities, apprenticeships and other local employment measures.
“This doesn’t mean local people will have to suffer.
“We have been negotiating very closely with the port’s management and have secured many millions towards A13 improvements.”
In June, retail giant Marks and Spencer became the first company to announce it would be locating at the logistics park, bringing 700 jobs.
But the firm’s 900,000 square feet of warehouses will take up just 10 per cent of the site, which is twice the size of the City of London.
Mr Smith added: “Once the council approves this order, the port will be able to encourage more organisations to follow Marks and Spencer, M&S themselves will be able to put forward their detailed proposals, and the new jobs will start to come.”
Thurrock Council will agree the order at a special meeting on Monday night.
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