Head of the Bristol office Tim Davies said a new junction on the M49 was vital to open up further brownfield land for developers looking for bigger and bigger warehouse and distribution centres close to the West’s busiest motorway hub.
Tim said: “With the economy on an upward spiral we want to take advantage of this and it’s essential that the Government commit money to provide better infrastructure. Building a new junction on the M49 would open up whole swathes of land at Severnside and also improve connectivity to the port.
“My concern is that without better connections to the motorway some of the big players will begin to look outside the area.”
Tim Davies was commenting on a flurry of headline deals amounting to hundreds of thousands of square feet.
Farm Foods has just announced it is to open a 175,000 sq ft distribution centre on Central Park – alongside the Chep pallet premises. Other major occupiers include Morrisons, Tesco, Asda and the Co-op.
Current requirements in the South West include up to 1million sq ft for The Range home, leisure and garden specialists and 600,000 sq ft for B&M Stores.
Tim went on: “Size is clearly becoming more and more important in today’s economy. The Co op and Asda opened massive units last year of 450,000 sq ft and 600,000 sq ft respectively. Simple economies of scale are fuelling demand for bigger and bigger distribution centres.
“With the economic recovery in full swing it is clear that many suppliers are gearing up their distribution requirements ready to take advantage of the upturn.
“And although the Avonmouth area has attracted its fair share of major occupiers the lack of access onto the M49 could become critical. If we can’t open up direct access to the motorway network we are in danger of losing out as other occupiers look further beyond the region.
“For instance, Home Bargains has just taken 500,000 at Solstice Park near Salisbury.”