Search

Jobs boost if windfarm gets go-ahead

PUBLISHED: 17:04 23 May 2008 | UPDATED: 20:29 05 July 2010

OVER 100 new jobs could be created in Lowestoft as plans to build an operational base for the world's largest offshore windfarm look set to be given the go-ahead.

OVER 100 new jobs could be created in Lowestoft as plans to build an operational base for the world's largest offshore windfarm look set to be given the go-ahead.

Plans to construct an aircraft hangar and helicopter landing pad on a jetty at Waveney Dock, off Battery Green Road, looks set to be given approval at a meeting of Waveney District Council's development control committee on Wednesday.

Councillors have been recommended by planners to approve the application from Bond Air Services, subject to an objection about flooding concerns from the Environment Agency being resolved. With the proposed site to become a dedicated base for one helicopter, housed in a 16.5m by 16m steel-framed hangar, energy company Airtricity want to operate and maintain the Greater Gabbard windfarm, which will feature 140 turbines 31 miles off the Lowestoft coast in the Outer Thames Estuary, by 2010.

The development is seen as a major step forward in Lowestoft's bid to transform itself into the UK's wind energy capital. A statement from the council's economic regeneration department says: “The proposal is of vital importance to underpin the aspiration of Lowestoft as the principal centre of offshore renewable energy in the UK.”

The proposed development is thought to complement the OrbisEnergy Centre in creating a wider jobs bonanza in the town. And with the £9.4m Orbis centre housing 30 renewable energy companies as it is built at nearby Ness Point, a statement from the council's regeneration department to the committee says: “Positive support for this key sector is vital if we are to benefit from the future developments, where we are looking for up to £2bn to be captured in this region.”

The Environment Agency has initially objected to the aircraft hangar plans on the grounds of flood risk, but negotiations are continuing and an update will be given to councillors at the planning meeting being held at the Beccles Public Hall.

There are also concerns over noise, which is created by the helicopters, although the committee will be told that all flights will take place over water.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Lowestoft Journal

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists