Aug 24 2012 By Doug Archibald
MORE THAN 30 jobs have been promised if a firm’s expansion plans get the nod from councillors.
Industry services company PPM Ltd is gearing up for a three-phase expansion at Lockerbie.
That would mean a new manufacturing and storage building, three food processing and packaging units along with various roadworks, park and landscaping on ground next top the PPM/Haas-Tek industrial site to the north of the town.
The application, recommended for approval, goes before the planning applications committee next week, continued from June to ensure all neighbours had been notified.
There is a potential hiccup, though, in the shape of an objection from the council roads officer who is not happy with the package of off-site improvements to adjoining roads, particularly the U280.
Councillors will be told there are road safety fears in the face of a “substantial increase in traffic” created by the development.
And “concerns remain” over the width of the U280 which would make it difficult for two heavy lorries to “manoeuvre concurrently”.
There are also worries about the junction with the B723 and “inherent design flaws” in a new pavement.
Road safety fears are also voiced in another objection, from Mr Allan Forrest.
However, case officer Grant Douglas says: “It has been demonstrated and accepted that the traffic impacts on the proposal can be accommodated in capacity terms within the existing road network.”
If given approval the development will be carried out in three phases with the 3,300 square metre manufacturing and storage building completed first; with two food processing and packaging units, at 1,200 square metres each, in the second; and the third unit in the final phase.
The committee will also be told that, in an economic context, the development would support the expansion and diversification of the existing business.
The first phase expansion, around 30 per cent, would create around 12 new jobs while the late developments would bring in twenty plus.
Mr Douglas adds in his report: “There would also be additional indirect benefits to other employers that supply or are supplied by the applicant’s business and the transport and the construction sector.”
The application carries an approval recommendation but with a lengthy string of conditions.