Overview

We came from having no Scottish land position or local knowledge whatsoever to speculatively acquiring 36 acres and then delivering a 500,000 sq ft shed for ASDA, securing 600 jobs and investing £40 million in the process.

All achieved in 12 months, despite uncovering the archaeological remains of a medieval moat and castle, seeing through a call in by the Scottish Government, securing consent in a HSE Inner Hazard Zone, navigating a ransom piece of land and having to pile 30 metres through alluvial soils.

Challenges

To create something from nothing within a timescale of 12 months for site search, acquisition, planning consent and completion of fully operational facility by August 2012.

Results

A new facility delivered on time for ASDA within the following timetable milestones:

Site identified and planning application submitted 22nd August 2011
Detailed planning consent received 21st December 2011
Deal completed 24th December 2011
Building operational 31st August 2012

“Bericote helped us save millions in relocation and transport costs, by delivering a new facility in Grangemouth on a site that everyone said would never be delivered in time.”

asda-logo Andy Walker, Distribution Network Development, ASDA Wal-Mart

Background

Bericote responded immediately to ASDA’s identified need for a new facility in Grangemouth.

Speculatively and beneath the market radar Bericote undertook a comprehensive search and evaluation of site opportunities. We identified a 36 acre site, off market, at Earls Gate Road as being the only site locally, capable of accommodating the requirement.

The Earls Gate site had multiple constraints to development and ASDA were being advised to look at other ‘oven ready’ options along the M8 corridor away from Grangemouth.

We invested our own capital in pursuing due diligence on the Earl’s Gate site and progressing a planning application for ASDA’s scheme, always with the delivery date of August 2012 in mind.

Site related hurdles that we navigated over the coming months included:

  • Inner Hazard Zone status – Planning Advice for Development near Hazardous Installations (PADHI) advised against consent being granted
  • Lack of planning consent – multi unit industrial scheme envisaged previously
  • Scottish Planning System – requires minimum 12 week pre-application notice period
  • Ransom – Third party owned land required for access
  • Asbestos removal and demolition of existing buildings
  • Archaeology – 16th and 17th Century remains believed to be on site
  • Geology – Piling required to 30 metres depth
  • Flood Risk – Within tidal flood zone

Planning

Achieving a resolution to grant planning within 12 weeks of submission involved wide ranging negotiations, including:

  • Improvements to junction 6 of the M9 motorway
  • New 3 metre wide cycle way constructed along the boundary
  • Ecological mitigation including off-site Green space initiatives such as tree planting in public open space
  • Scottish Environment Protection Agency to agree flood alleviation measures
  • Health and Safety Executive to overcome the PADHI advice against planning consent being granted.
  • Application being called in by Scottish Ministers

Sustainability

In line with ASDA Wal-Mart’s five year sustainability plan, energy/carbon reduction measures in the facility include:

  • Roof mounted Photovoltaic Solar Panels provide 18,000 kWh/year and reduce carbon emissions by 9,500 Kg/C02/year
  • Comined Heat and Power (CHP) unit which will produce 1 million kWh/year of heat and 716,000 kWh/year of low carbon electricity and reduce carbon emissions by 250,000 Kg/C02/year
  • Rainwater harvesting reduces fresh water consumption by 30% – HGV wash recycles up to 60% of water
  • Centralised building management system – High efficiency heat recovery on all exhausted ventilation air
  • Low energy LED lighting
  • On target for BREEAM Excellent