Is speculative development back on the radar?

After years of little or no speculative development due to the property crash in 2007 / 2008 there are signs that speculative development might be back on the radar for the M65 corridor.

The industrial market has continued with high levels of demand but became somewhat static due to the lack of speculative development.

Despite the success of sites such as Burnley Bridge Business Park developers have been shying away from speculative units. However now there are signs along the M65 that the speculative industrial market may be loosening with various schemes obtaining planning consent and coming forward in the next couple of years.

Leading the way is Frontier Business Park at Junction 6 of the M65 where Monte Developments are well under way with Frontier Park One and Pioneer Court with construction committed for units ranging from 18,950 sq.ft. to 185,000 sq.ft.

At South Rings in Preston Roundhouse recently completed a speculative industrial development and in Chorley planning consent has been granted for FI Real Estate Management’s Botany Bay Scheme which potentially will create 300,000 sq.ft. of logistics space.

Moving further along the M65 corridor work continues at Junction 4 by Aldergreen on their industrial scheme.

In Burnley, Barnfield Construction committed to 20,000 sq.ft. of speculative space earlier this year with 10,000 sq.ft. already under offer off plan and strong interest in the final 10,000 sq.ft.

Trebor Developments in conjunction with Burnley Borough Council have recently completed the first phase of Vision Park providing small B1 units for high tech businesses and a further phase of units ranging from 2,500 to 5,500 sq.ft. Despite only being on the market for three months the development is already at 50% occupancy.

In Pendle our Burnley office is advising two land owners who are looking at submitting planning applications for speculative industrial schemes which hopefully will come forward in 2019. These follow the successful Pendle Court development by Pendle Projects where the first phase is fully occupied and Phase II will bring forward 11 small business units with development commencing in early 2019. After years of little or no development the signs are now positive for the area and these new committed and proposed speculative developments will add to the existing larger design and build opportunities at developments such as Burnley Bridge Business Park and Frontier Business Park.