Backing for key’ business park plans

THE doubling in size of Exmouth s Liverton Business Park, which could free up key development sites in the town centre, was unveiled this week - and won town hall backing.

THE doubling in size of Exmouth's Liverton Business Park, which could free up key development sites in the town centre, was unveiled this week - and won town hall backing.

Last week, the Journal broke the news that Clinton Devon Estates, the owners of the Salterton Road park, plan a major expansion into two adjacent fields, north of the current site, writes David Beasley.

This week, Clinton land agent John Bain and chartered surveyor Malcolm Williams said there was even the possibility of expanding to the east into a third field.

They confirmed last week's story that for 'several years' Clinton had been in talks with Jewson's, the district council - owners of Camperdown Depot, the Post Office and Stage Coach (bus garage). The idea was to relocate them from the town centre to an extended out-of-town business park.

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At a town council meeting on Monday, councillors agreed that, if those town centre operations were moved, it would free-up many of Exmouth's most valuable plots �- opening the door to large-scale regeneration

Councillors heard the current business park - home to B&Q and McDonalds among others - covered 16 acres. Twelve acres were used by businesses with the rest for access roads and landscaping.

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Two extra fields would increase the park by approximately 19 acres, providing an extra nine acres for businesses.

There was also potential for developing a third field.

Mr Williams told councillors that, while much of the land in the third field was 'too steep', his 'best guess' was it could readily provide at least another five acres for expansion in the future, possibly more.

Land agent Mr Bain said, however, it would cost about �1 million to build access to the extended site and any profit could be 'mitigated by the cost of getting down there'.

Mr Williams added: "We would not even think about spending that kind of money until we had two to three key players." He said they would not proceed without council support.

Cllr Mark Williams said: "This is the best news we have heard in Exmouth since the recession started."

Mayor Darryl Nicholas said: "This town council is really determined to ensure in Exmouth we reach our full potential. This is potentially very exciting.

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