Lancashire County Council, Maple Grove and Brookhouse Group have gained planning consent for a 2.2m sq ft development at the Cuerden site near Bamber Bridge, including a 350,000 sq ft unit to be occupied by furniture giant Ikea.
The application to South Ribble Council for the 160-acre Cuerden site proposed 860,000 sq ft of industrial warehouses, 387,000 sq ft of offices, 757,000 sq ft of retail and leisure space, an 86,000 sq ft hotel, and 120,500 sq ft for a gym, crèche and car showroom. The scheme also includes up to 210 homes.
The proposals for the retail element, alongside the access and infrastructure for the site were approved in detail, while the rest of the application is in outline form.
DLA Architecture and Barton Willmore are advising on the project.
Cllr Geoff Driver, leader of Lancashire County Council said: “We are pleased that these plans, that will deliver significant economic benefits, including creating over 4,500 new jobs locally have been approved by South Ribble’s planning committee.
“The Cuerden strategic site has been earmarked as a major new employment site for many years, but the lack of infrastructure to service the site has held back development. These proposals will provide the necessary investment to make this a reality.
“We know from local people that there are concerns about traffic, but these plans will provide investment to reduce hotspots in this part of South Ribble. Highways England and our own highways department were both consulted and they are happy with these proposals.
“This is the largest single site being delivered by the City Deal, and this is another step forward for our ambitions to bring thousands of new jobs to the area and boost the economy, along with a major investment in the road network.”
Jeremy Hartley from Eric Wright Group said: “The planning decision taken by members to approve the plans for the Cuerden Strategic Site is excellent news for the economy of central Lancashire. It will now allow the commencement of the significant infrastructure required to unlock the site which in turn will lead to the creation of thousands of new jobs for local communities.
“There has been a lot of interest in the scheme from potential future occupiers and we will now work hard to take the project forward.”