A blueprint shows a huge new office building on the last remaining area of Chester Business Park with the potential to create almost 800 jobs.
The 47,600 square feet complex would front Herons Way facing serviced offices in Regus House.
Chester Business Park is already home to a number of national and international companies including Bank of America Merrill Lynch, MBNA, M&S Money, biopharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb and Tetra Pak.
A document backing the latest plan by Chester Parkside Limited argues economic benefits would include the ‘maximum potential creation of 790 new jobs’ plus construction jobs during the building phase.
The office vision is said to represent ‘sustainable’ development on a well-established business park although it does lie within the green belt. The scheme would feature landscaping and car parking.
Bordered by woodland, ‘several’ trees would need to be felled although the impact is described as ‘minor’. An ecological report shows the site has the potential to support the legally-protected species of Great Crested Newts (GCN) with measures recommended prior to any works.
There are already two newt mitigation ponds on site with none present in the first while the other pond has not been assessed. The report concludes the development is unlikely to affect the second pond in any event due to its location in woodland which won’t be touched.
The office scheme would bring together the last three identified development sites available on Chester Business Park to create a single development site to be known as Parkside One.
There were concerns companies would abandon Chester Business Park in favour of the new business quarter being created by Muse Developments next to Chester Railway Station. But this has not happened so far and the first building in the scheme is still not full.
Muse director Phil Mayall has never seen the situation as a binary choice.
He told The Chronicle: “I think there’s a danger that you fall into the trap of saying companies will look at the same space whether out of town or in town. We should be providing a choice and that’s exactly what this is about, so it isn’t an out-of-town versus in-town situation.”