Claire Kent, planning director at design and planning consultancy Barton Willmore, said plans for the park, mooted by Sunderland and South Tyneside Councils, could be a catalyst for significant economic growth in the area.
Both local authorities are seeking opinions on the initiative which would see the creation of a park aimed at attracting businesses from the automotive supply chain, and advanced manufacturing sectors.
Sunderland and South Tyneside Councils suggest the manufacturing park could create more than 5,200 jobs and attract more than £300m of private investment, upon its completion in 2027.
Claire Kent said: “These plans represent a fantastic opportunity for Sunderland and South Tyneside.
“As planning advisors to the advanced manufacturing park at Waverley near Rotherham, the Barton Willmore team has experienced first-hand how this type of model can work to great effect.
“The Waverley AMP has grown steadily over the last ten years and is now a recognised hub of advanced manufacturing capabilities – hosting the likes of the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre with Boeing; Rolls-Royce, and Castings Technology International.
“These organisations have attracted supply chain industries that benefit from the way manufacturing has clustered in a specific area.”
Since its launch, the Waverley AMP has led to the creation of more than 700 highly skilled jobs, with another 2000 jobs set to be created through further developments.
Claire highlighted the opportunity for Sunderland and South Tyneside to build on its current reputation for automotive manufacturing. Along with Nissan, the area is already home to global names such as Calsonic Kansei Ltd, Re-Tek Ltd and Vantec Europe Ltd.
She said: “The Government has already recognised the proposed park as a national catalyst for economic growth, that’s why it has been designated a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project (NSIP).
“The status means it requires single development consent as opposed to planning permission.
“As the first commercial NSIP that is likely to be brought forward under the NSIP consenting regime, developers and local authorities throughout the UK will follow the scheme’s progress with interest.”
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