Business park development is underway

WORK has started on a new commercial estate in Ipswich which could eventually produce hundreds of new jobs. The new £20 million Harris Business Estate is on the 19 acre former Harris Bacon Factory site, near to the existing Hadleigh Road industrial estate.

WORK has started on a new commercial estate in Ipswich which could eventually produce hundreds of new jobs

The new £20 million Harris Business Estate is on the 19 acre former Harris Bacon Factory site, near to the existing Hadleigh Road industrial estate.

At its peak of operation the food factory provided work for hundreds of local people and now developer Peter Colby hopes it will again provide a major jobs boost for the area.

He said: “We are about building jobs. “We don't build house and we don't built retail, though there might be some trade counters here.


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“We provide somewhere where people who want to create their own business can start up and hopefully grow and employ other people. I have some people with me who have been with me for years. This site might well provide 300 or more jobs eventually.”

He believes that there will be strong demand for premises within the site.

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The 19 acre site will provide 300,000 sq ft of work related buildings and is one the last sites earmarked for industrial warehousing, commercial and manufacturing development with the Ipswich borough boundary.

The new site is being developed by Peter Colby Commercials, which recently acquired the site from EEDA (the East of England Development Agency), and is being marketed by Penn Commercial of Ipswich.

Peter Colby Commercials is the company that developed Lion Barn Industrial Estate in Needham Market 10 years ago.

“Development will include starter units for business and there is capacity for warehousing, manufacturing and service sector industries, offices and trade counter uses,” he said. “We aim to meet a wide variety of different requirements.

“We are very proud of what we have done at Lion Barn Needham Market. We are applying for another six acre site further along which I could fill this morning with people who want to build businesses and employ people from the Ipswich area.”

Agent Vanessa Penn said: “This is an important site and a big development for Ipswich, and I'm very proud that we, as a very young business, are involved,” she said.

“I've been in Ipswich most of my life and the commercial property market is as strong as I have seen it. “There are a number of very exciting development projects going on around the town. This however, is something quite exceptional. It is unlikely that a similar site will come on the market now for many, many years,” she said.

“We're already in discussion with a number of interested parties. Some of these are local; others are businesses looking to re-locate to the area and bring much-needed new jobs,” she added.

Ipswich Borough Council chief executive James Hehir, said: “This is a major business story for Ipswich and in job creation for the town.

“Sites of this size within the borough are few and far between so it is excellent news that the area is being developed to offer a variety of commercial uses. This is an excellent use for previously developed land and it is totally in line with the council's policy to make a priority of brown field sites."

David Clark Associates, building design consultants, are architects and advisors for the site.

One of the potential new uses for a part of the site is a new depot for Ipswich Buses, allowing its site in Constantine Road, next to the Ipswich Town football ground, also to be re-developed.

Mr Colby said he had agreed with EDA to provide a new home for the bus depot if they wanted to move.

He added: “Work has started on conversion of the former Harris factory building into units. Our first job is to get permission and build the new entrance road. As soon as that begins we can begin the developing the site.”

He is also seeking permission for a pedestrian path and cycle track, at the edge of the site, to link Hadleigh Road with the riverside.

“I hope we can build a pedestrian bridge over the river so that people who work on either side will be able to get across without having to drive all the way around,” he added.

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