D-Day approaches for Morley industrial estate plans

Controversial plans to build a huge new industrial estate in Morley will be publicly debated again this week.

By David Spereall, Local Democracy Reporting Service
Wednesday, 18th May 2022, 4:45 am

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Capitol Park, located off Junction 28 of the M62, could expand north from its current 45-acre base across a neighbouring farm.

The site’s owners say the move would create around 2,000 jobs for the area.

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Controversial plans to build a huge new industrial estate in Morley will be publicly debated again this week.

But campaigners are avidly fighting the scheme, saying it would clog up surrounding roads, including Dewsbury Road, and disturb neighbours.

Nearly 400 people have objected in total.

Leeds councillors delayed making a decision on the plans when they were brought in November to allow for more information to be gathered.

A new report going before them this Thursday, prepared by planning officers, said many of the issues raised by objectors can be adequately addressed.

It said: “At this stage, the details of how individual units will operate is not yet known and, therefore, it is considered that subject to conditions issues relating to noise and light pollution during and after construction of the development can be controlled satisfactorily.”

Similarly, the report said that the exact makeup of the units is “not fixed at this stage” and so could be installed in a way, “That will not be detrimental to the surrounding area.”

Officers also said that a market analysis had been put forward in support of the scheme, which emphasised the need for “Leeds to compete with neighbouring boroughs and the wider region in attracting new and inward investment and creating jobs.”

But objecting to the plans in November, Oliver Newton, who has since become Morley mayor and an elected Leeds councillor, said: “There is so much at stake for the area. Traffic, environment, noise, light pollution that are all grave concerns for the residents.

“Everyone in Leeds knows that this is a bottleneck junction. There will be a new group of vehicles coming from Capitol Park.

“It’s not just going to affect Morley, but the whole of West Yorkshire.”

Councillors have been advised to defer and delegate the case to the council’s chief planning officer for approval, subject to conditions.

These would include a £4m contribution for improvements to J28 of the M62 and the planting of 10,000 trees.