Island Road, Reading

Client: Evander Properties Ltd and RockspringLocation: ReadingScale: 24,200 sq mStatus: Ongoing

Island Road, Reading

Delivering a high-quality industrial and logistics scheme on an important gateway site in Reading

The A33 corridor is an excellent location for industrial and logistics development in Reading, benefiting from strong links to the M4. Evander Properties identified this unallocated site as an opportunity to deliver significant economic benefi ts in south Reading, and bought it speculatively with funding partner Rockspring.

Turley provided planning advice at the site acquisition stage, confirming good prospects of securing permission, which gave the client confi dence to proceed. We led negotiations with Reading Borough Council, from initial pre-application engagement and Environmental Impact Assessment screening, through to securing outline planning permission and reserved matters approval.

Promoting the economic benefits of development and minimising environmental impacts was crucial to securing planning permission. We needed to balance a number of factors: the site is a former landfill, adjacent to the River Kennet, and it adjoins a designated biodiversity site.

Being located on a gateway route into Reading, design considerations have been critical. Turley negotiated with the Council at both the outline and reserved matters stages, allaying concerns regarding industrial development in this prominent location. We worked with the architects to analyse the A33 corridor, demonstrating the merits of the scheme in its context, and helping to establish key design parameters acceptable to the client. This gave the Council the necessary comfort that the development would provide a quality frontage.

Collaboration with the Council to discharge pre-commencement planning conditions and allow a timely start on site has formed a key part of the brief. Once operational, the site has the potential to support between 250 and 400 new jobs, plus significant employment opportunities during construction. An Employment Skills and Training Plan is being adopted to maximise local employment and improve skills.

In addition, the client will upgrade Island Road to mitigate against future flooding, secured in lieu of highways contributions. This has the ability to unlock further land for development in the area.