Eco-friendly makeover on the cards for ‘unattractive’ industrial site

Artist's impression of the redeveloped Bourne End industrial estate
Artist's impression of the redeveloped Bourne End industrial estate

Proposed changes to the Bourne End industrial estate could see the area transformed into a more modern development better suiting the needs of the area.

A planning application to remove certain conditions on the plot – relating to building height and operation hours – so that the changes can be implemented has been submitted to Dacorum Borough Council.

The existing industrial estate forms part of Green Belt land a mile to the west of Hemel Hempstead.

It originally comprised a former saw mill, but, according to the application, over time the site has moved on in a ‘piecemeal fashion’ and now comprises an established but ‘unattractive’ employment area.

Featured in the new design is a new public space and the diversion of public footpaths, as well as a larger and more modern development, with associated car parking and high quality office space.

The building will be clad in modern soft-profiled, colour-coated steel cladding, using subtle shades of grey so as to fit in with its green surroundings.

If approved, the building would be set away from the existing residential properties in Bourne End Lane, and a further public open space provided for the benefit of the residents.

The proposals also refer to the realignment and opening up the Bourne Gutter - an occasional tributary of the river Bulbourne - in line with the wishes of the Environment Agency.

It is hoped the development would improve the biodiversity of the area with the provision of bat and bird boxes to the many new trees that will be planted, along with shrubs, wild flowers and grass land that will allow space for insects, wild animals and birds to live and forage.

A decision on the plans is expected by the end of September.