Calderdale Council plans to compulsorily buy land for a new business park if the landowners are not willing to sell it to them voluntarily.
The council is keen to move plans for the proposed Clifton Business Park and Enterprise Zone forward as it could create 1,300 jobs and lead to 23 business units being based there.
But the problem at the moment it that they don’t own the land next to the Holiday Inn alongside Wakefield Road at Clifton. The land is close to Brighouse and next to junction 25 of the M62.
At a Calderdale Council Cabinet meeting next Monday councillors will be asked to approve the acquisition of the land. While negotiations with the current landowners are currently underway and are the preferred approach, the council, subject to Cabinet approval, will start the Compulsory Purchase Order process in case it is needed.
Cabinet Members will also be asked to approve the submission of an Outline and Full Business Case to the West Yorkshire Combined Authority to release funding to buy the land and progress development.
In December the West Yorkshire Combined Authority reserved £5.9m of Growth Deal 3 funding for the initial phase of the site’s development.
The council is working with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) to transform the large site into a regionally significant business park and Enterprise Zone to house Calderdale’s growing firms and attract new businesses from outside the region.
Clr Barry Collins, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economic Development, said: “The site is Calderdale’s most significant opportunity to address demand for high-quality employment space. Once established, it would boost economic growth and create hundreds of jobs within around 23 business units.
“The project would also improve local air quality, ease congestion by moving traffic away from Brighouse town centre while bringing more opportunities to walk and cycle and reduce flood risk to nearby homes and businesses by better managing surface water run-off onto Wakefield Road.”
The site has been designated as employment land for more than 10 years but this alone has not been enough to prompt development despite demand and the need for economic growth, which is why the council is taking action.
The developed areas will be balanced by green areas on-site with trees, plants and wildlife.
Calderdale Council recently secured £4.5m from the Department for Transport which is earmarked to improve walking, cycling and road access to Clifton Business Park and reduce congestion around the site. This includes linking the A644 Wakefield Road and A643 Clifton Common.
The Cabinet meeting will take place on next Monday (January 15) at Halifax Town Hall from 6pm.