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Leeds set to benefit from new £50m Motorway Service Area

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18 Dec 2015

The Leeds City Region is set to benefit from a ‘new concept’ Motorway Service Area (MSA) at Junction 45 of the M1. Located within the Aire Valley, it will create at least 700 job opportunities, being some 400 in the construction phase and including 300 permanent new full-time equivalent jobs when the MSA opens. Subject to receiving Planning Permission next year, the opening of the MSA is programmed for Autumn 2017.

Extra MSA Group is currently preparing its Planning Application for the new £50m facility that will significantly improve road safety within this section of the Motorway Network, between the existing MSAs at M62 Hartshead Moor, M1 Woolley Edge, M62/A1M Ferrybridge and A1M Wetherby. The new MSA on land to the south east of the M1 Skelton Gate Junction is well placed to meet this road safety ‘need’ in accordance with National Planning Policy and is also located at the ‘Gateway’ to the Aire Valley Enterprise Zone. As confirmed by Highways England, up-to-date Policy is for Service Areas to be less than 30 minutes’ drive time apart, on the Country’s ever busier Motorway Network.

Extra’s unique Service Areas typically include an attractive Food Court style Facilities Building, comprising a wide range of popular and high quality food and ancillary retail outlets, together with a Business Centre, Hotel and Filling Station, as well as a host of other complementary facilities. The proposals also incorporate a new Visitor Centre and improved access for Skelton Lake, with the new Service Area likely to be named “Leeds Skelton Lake Services”.

Discussions are already underway with local employment advisors to ensure recruitment for the 300 full time equivalent new jobs and 400 construction job opportunities is focused on the local area. Extra MSA Group are also planning to include an apprenticeship Scheme in partnership with the region’s Schools and Colleges.

Andrew Long, Chief Executive Officer of Extra MSA Group, said: “A new MSA for Leeds at M1 J45 will meet the road safety ‘need’ set out by Highways England and in National Planning Policy, helping to reduce fatigue related accidents on this busy section of the Motorway Network. It will also provide a substantial package of economic, social and environmental benefits for this part of Leeds and the wider City Region.

“This is a unique opportunity to facilitate and complement the adjacent new housing proposals for East Leeds, as well as supporting the development of the Aire Valley Enterprise Zone and the overall objectives of the Aire Valley Area Action Plan. Extra is also committed to maximising the local economic benefits through new job creation, Local Recruitment and Apprenticeship Schemes, together with generating additional Business Rates revenue of some £1.1m per annum.”

Extra MSA Group is currently in consultation with Leeds City Council and the Local Enterprise Partnership, together with other ‘stakeholders’, for the preparation of its proposed Planning Application in Spring next year. A team of locally based Consultants and Advisors has been appointed by Extra MSA Group to work on the project, including Leeds-based Architecture 519, Spawforths, i-Transport LLP, Arup and DWF Solicitors.