Wind plan not just hot air
A STREAMLINED planning system aimed at attracting offshore wind companies to Grimsby has moved a step closer to fruition.
North East Lincolnshire Council has given the green light for a Local Development Order (LDO) for the Port of Grimsby Enterprise Zone to be put out to consultation.
The LDO, which sets out a process of "deemed" consent for specific types of development within the Enterprise Zone , will be subject to a 28-day consultation, with the final version due to be approved in January.
The consultation will apply to the 3.6-hectare portion of the 11-hectare enterprise zone located along the North Quay of Grimsby Docks, known as G2.
Consultation on the LDO for the other 7.4 hectares, which are located further east beyond the Seafood Village, known as G1, has been put on hold to allow for the exact layout of the plot to be finalised and for an environmental impact assessment to be carried out.
An LDO will remove the need to obtain planning permission for specific types of development – meaning, in effect, that outline planning permission would already be in place for business, general industrial and storage and distribution uses.
A simplified planning system is one of the key benefits of enterprise zone status, which was granted to sections of the port estate in November last year.
Another is a discount on business rates, expected to amount to around £275,000 over a five-year period.
The council's head of development Jason Longhurst said the LDO would spread the message that North East Lincolnshire was "open for business".
He added: "This is about enabling development and investment.
"We do need to underpin that message with a fast-track approach to planning and this puts us very much in the driving seat."
The Port of Grimsby Enterprise Zone was set up primarily to attract operations and maintenance companies working in the offshore wind sector.
Centrica and RES already operate from Grimsby Docks and last month EoN was given planning application to build a new operations and maintenance base – which will take up around half of the 3.6-hectare G2 site.