Royal London's latest plans to create a new car park on their Alderley Road campus, which is situated in the Cheshire Green Belt, will be considered by the Northern Planning Committee at their meeting on Wednesday, 7th October.
Wilmslow's largest employer has applied to build a permanent car park, on the site of the current temporary car park, and provide 126 car parking spaces.
The proposal is recommended for approval on the grounds that "The overall positive economic benefits of the proposals, the lack of better alternatives, in combination with the history of numerous temporary permissions, are considered to provide very special circumstances that justify inappropriate development in the Green Belt."
In November 2012 Royal London were granted permission to use some land at the site as a temporary car park for approximately 104 vehicles. The permission stated that the temporary car park must be returned to a grassed field on or before December 2015, unless a further application was approved by the Local Planning Authority in the meantime.
Prior to this latest application Royal London applied in December 2014 to build a permanent car park with 90 spaces on a grassed area at the front of the Alderley Road campus, adjacent to the existing Lodge car park. This planning application is still to be determined.
Speaking at the time this latest application was submitted, Royal London's Head of Procurement & Facilities, Neil Kilshaw said: "We have been discussing our plans with the Council. Once it becomes clear which of our two planning applications the Council favours we will withdraw the other application.
"Royal London already has an ambitious Green Travel Plan which encourages car-sharing and there is a regular shuttle bus to and from the station. However, the company is expanding rapidly and we need to provide permanent parking spaces for our people, many of whom travel from other parts of East Cheshire and beyond. "
Earlier this year Royal London announced plans to create an additional 450 new jobs in Wilmslow and accommodate the new roles by building new, modern office accommodation on the eastern side of their campus. The business currently employs around 900 full time staff in the town and wants to increase the number of staff in Wilmslow to around 1,350.
The Royal London site has been identified in the Local Plan for mixed use development, delivering 75 homes, 17-24,000 sq m of employment space and a hotel.