THE first phase in a £7m business village for Stockton will be unveiled next week.
Featuring a trade park, hybrid office and industrial units, together with a leisure complex, the 50 acre development at Portrack Lane is expected to take two to three years to complete.
Stockton-based developers Mandale Commercial is already in discussion with potential keyholders for the 11 trade units - ranging from 3,500-12,500sq ft - which will be officially opened next Friday.
The “village” will sit between B&Q and Holme House Prison on land running along the A19. Access roads have already been forged through the site, but the majority remains subject to outline planning consent.
Commercial sales and lettings manager Stephen Rose said there had been strong advance interest for the 70,000sq ft of trade units from building suppliers, keen to piggy back on B&Q. “Plumbers merchants and building suppliers all trade on the back of each other,” he said. “B&Q has been a magnet for them.”
Mandale, which was previously involved in the Teesdale and Hartlepool Marina projects and recently secured major deals with the City of Durham and the NHS, will move its HQ to new offices on the site.
Detailed plans for the remainder of the development would be drawn up in response to specific demands from business, said Mr Rose.
“We will be applying for planning permission in sections once we know what people need,” he added.
“The roads are in, but there’s still a lot of land to go at.”
Despite gloomy property forecasts and a perceived slowing in the commercial market, Mandale said it had seen no evidence of a downturn.
“In fact, we’re booming,” said Mr Rose. But he said there was a growing trend for businesses to buy rather than enter into traditional lets.
“We have always let before, but this time we’ll be offering the freehold on some of the buildings on the site,” said Mr Rose.
“A lot of people running their own business don’t want to keep paying a rent.”
Mandale, which employs 50 office staff and 400 out on sites, is involved in scores of schemes right across the North-east and Yorkshire.
Last year the company made its debut in the Top 200 league table of leading North-east companies, which is produced by our sister paper The Journal this year and took fourth place in the Ward Hadaway Fastest 50 listing of fast growing North-east companies. Earlier this year company announced plans for a development of 20 apartments on a former petrol filling station site in Middlesbrough.
The scheme, on the site of the former Brambles Farm Service Station, on Longlands Road, would include six one-bedroom and 14 two-bedroom apartments in a L-shaped block.