A new £100m logistics hub is set to be built at Manchester Airport – creating more than 1,800 jobs.
The ‘world-class’ centre will house up to 1.4m sq ft of cargo space for freight companies, offering businesses unrivalled access to air and motorway links.
Bosses have submitted an outline planning application for the facility, which will form part of the £650m Airport City project.
It is hoped that construction could begin before the end of the year with the project expected to create more than 1,800 permanent jobs over the next 10 to 15 years, in addition to construction posts.
The north west currently produces 60 per cent of Britain’s industrial output, a significant proportion of which is exported.
Airport chiefs want to capitalise on the region’s industrial reputation and create an internationally-renowned logistics district, attracting firms from all over the globe.
John Atkins, Manchester Airports Group’s Airport City director, said: “This scheme will create a sustainable commercial product of international significance that will provide high quality and well-connected logistics facilities with access to the global marketplace and a population of over 24 million people within a two-hour drive time. This connectivity will create an exceptional opportunity to improve international trade, cut transit times and drive more efficient, sustainable supply chains whilst supporting the local community, increasing employment opportunities and stimulating economic activity in the north west.”
Manchester is the fourth busiest airport for cargo in Britain, carrying more than 107,000 tonnes of import and export freight and mail last year.
Cargo currently passes through the airport’s World Freight Terminal, next to junction six of the M56, which provides 675,000 sq ft of warehouse and office accommodation, but chiefs say they need to expand to cater for growing demand.
The new development will be built near to the existing cargo centre and the development will be split into medium and small-sized units, as well as featuring landscaped areas for wildlife and natural habitats.
It will form the southern part of the Airport City’s Enterprise Zone, which was unveiled by the government last March.
The project aims to transform Manchester Airport from a regional transport hub into an international business destination in its own right.
Around 1.5 million sq ft of office space; 650,000 sq ft of advanced manufacturing; around 2,500 new hotel beds; and up to 100,000 sq ft of retail and leisure facilities, will also be developed on land surrounding the airport’s public transport interchange and the north of the M56 spur road, creating up to 20,000 new jobs over the next 15 years.