PLANS have been revealed to redevelop part of the former Christchurch airfield site into a business park with two drive-through restaurants.
Southampton-based developer HamdonGate has applied to BCP Council for permission to build on the Somerford Road site next to the Meteor retail park, writes Josh Wright of the Local Democracy Reporting Service.
It said the scheme was a “rare opportunity to bring forward beneficial regeneration” in the town.
Previously housing an Office for National Statistics storage facility, the land was once the site of Christchurch Airport and a major part of the aircraft industry in the town.
The airfield was an RAF base during the Second World War but that use ended in 1966 following the closure of its control tower.
Some of the factory units remained but plans to clear the site were put forward in August.
HamdonGate has now submitted a full proposal to build a terrace of nine industrial units alongside one café with a drive-through and one fast food restaurant.
No details of would-be occupiers of the new buildings have been provided.
“The proposal represents a rare opportunity to bring forward a beneficial regeneration opportunity within Christchurch’s commercial heartland,” said the plans.
“[It will deliver] a significant increase in job opportunities compared to the extant use, together with two restaurant/drive-through opportunities to enhance the employee and visitor experience when visiting the Somerford Road, Wilverley Road and Meteor retail park.”
The statement added the new development would make “more efficient use” of the land and wold “contribute to the economic, social and environmental wellbeing of Christchurch”.
None of the trees bordering the site would need to be removed, it said, except for one “poor quality” tree to facilitate a pedestrian access requested by the council during preliminary discussions.
The application proposed the business units be given planning-use classes allowing them to be for either industrial or retail and office purposes.
Council planning officers will consider the application in the coming weeks.