Citrus Durham, owners of the vast 83-hectare site just off Junction 61 of the A1 near Bowburn, has submitted its outline planning application to Durham County Council.
If approved, it is estimated that almost £2bn could be added to the region’s economy in its first 10 years.
Proposals for the site, known as INTEGRA 61, include the construction of up to two million sq ft of employment space, including large industrial and distribution units, a 70-bedroom hotel, retail units, a nursery and up to 270 new homes along its boundaries closest to Bowburn village.
Following extensive consultations with the council and other key stakeholders, including the local community, the initial plans outlined in the summer have been amended to make provision for the potential relocation of the Bowburn GP surgery, a 60 bed residential care home and a family pub and restaurants.
David Cullingford, development manager for the project, said: “We have worked in a very collaborative way over the past year, with great commitment from council officers and other stakeholders to get to the position we are today in having submitted our plans.
“We appreciate all the feedback we have had and are delighted to have reached an important milestone for this strategic site which is allocated for employment use in the Council’s Development Plan.”
He added: “We’re 100% committed to INTEGRA 61 and totally confident that major companies will want to locate here, particularly those with large space requirements of up to 750,000sq ft.
“This will be an exemplar employment-led mixed use development for the north east and County Durham in particular.”
INTEGRA 61 will become one of the largest developments of its kind in the north east and Citrus claim the investment value of the project could be circa £170m once complete.
When it put its initial plans on show at a community event in Bowburn in July, the creation of much needed new jobs was widely welcomed.
If the application is successful, Citrus is aiming to commence the extensive infrastructure works at the beginning of 2017.