PLANS to build seven new ‘much needed’ warehouses in Birdwell have been approved by Barnsley

Council’s planning board - despite a number of objections from local residents.

The application, which was submitted in August, sought to build the commercial units - ranging from 3,300 square feet to 18,600 square feet - on the Dearne Valley Parkway.

A target date had originally been set for November 29, 2023 but the council subsequently deferred the plans.

These plans were given the green light by the council’s planning board on Tuesday.

Each of the large buildings will have its own service yard and parking areas, whilst the smaller units will have a combined area.

A report states: “The variety of sizes was part of the original brief, allowing for new start-up businesses in the smaller units, with more established businesses taking the larger units if they desire to expand.

“The range also allows businesses to start up in small units and then expand into larger units on the same site.

“The layout of the units maximises the net developable area of the site but still allowing for all necessary service yards, car parking, bin stores and landscaping.

“The intention is for buildings to have their main office entrances facing the parking areas.

“This makes the building entrances noticeable which will be emphasised by a canopy and distinctive wall finishes at these points.

“Electric car charging points will be provided to each of the units.”

A total of 110 new car parking spaces will be added to the new site, as well as ten motorcycle, 60 cycle and nine disability spaces.

The plans state the site will be accessed from the existing road network of the Dearne Valley Parkway onto the existing Kestrel Way to the north of the site.

Although the road is not adopted, it’s intended that a turning head will be added to the network.

A number of residents objected to the concerns, with issues relating to no need for additional units, impact upon air quality and the possibility of increased crime associated with nearby units.

However, representatives from Enterprising Barnsley claimed the units were ‘much needed’.

In a bid to improve the biodiversity of the area, the developers have been ordered to spend a total of £535,000 to create 21 habitat units.

The report added: “The development would lead to investment and new employment opportunities at both the construction and operational stage.

“Enterprising Barnsley fully support the application and development of speculative units that are needed to generate economic growth in the borough, with there being a particular emphasis on the requirement for smaller units.

“In relation to biodiversity a combination of on site mitigation and off site compensation would need to be secured by S106 agreement to achieve sufficient credits so that a ten per cent biodiversity net gain is achieved as per the requirements of the masterplan.

“To achieve this, a financial contribution equivalent to 21.43 habitat units (£535,750) is to be secured via a S106 agreement unless an agreed off-site location can be secured.”

Coun David White told the Chronicle: “Yet again Barnsley Council’s planning approve yet more warehouses knowing that the majority of residents in the Hoyland area want to retain at least some last vestiges of green space.

“Only yesterday I was stuck in mid morning traffic through Birdwell, backed up for over a mile due to congestion at the Birdwell Roundabout.

“It’s not going to help this significant issue by adding more and more traffic, and neither will it help in a couple of years time by saying ‘we told you so’.

“In many people’s view, we have already destroyed our once lovely town, and Barnsley Council should finally start to listen to their residents opinions, rather than imposing their will on us.

“We have to live with it, they don’t.”