High-tech Barking business hub gets green light

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Industria could generate jobs for up to 250 people. - Credit: Be First

A high-tech business hub scheme has been given the green light by the town hall.

The proposals for River Road, Barking, were approved by Barking and Dagenham councillors at a planning committee meeting on Tuesday, February 16.

Called Industria, the hub is the brainchild of Be First, Barking and Dagenham Council’s regeneration arm. It will be situated yards from the River Thames and River Roding.

It could host green industries, a winery, specialist food production and jewellery makers.

Cllr Darren Rodwell, leader of Barking and Dagenham Council, hailed the decision as another sign of the good times to come for the borough.

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He said: "This is the sort of attractive and sustainable industrial development which will no doubt create quality jobs and a place where wine makers, artists and artisans will be able to thrive alongside more traditional trades.

"It’s another boost to this booming part of London which is increasingly seeing forward-thinking entrepreneurs and businesses make their way here."

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The development is supported by £1million from the Mayor of London’s good growth funding pot and £33m from Barking and Dagenham Council.

London deputy mayor for planning, regeneration and skills, Jules Pipe, said: "I’m pleased to support this innovative and ambitious project – which is the first of its kind in London.

"I look forward to seeing the benefits it will bring to the economy in Barking and the wider area."

The development at the corner of Long Reach Road and Creek Road will house tenants in flexible units arranged around a multi-storey hub for vehicles.

Flexible, light industrial units range in size from 1,700 to 5,200 sqft with factory units from 140 to 2,500 sqft.

The scheme also includes shops, green walls, a business lounge and café.

Lily Kwong, development manager at Be First, said: "We’ve had a great deal of interest in this site which will be a fantastic place for ambitious businesses to base themselves, with a great location, excellent facilities and sustainability built-in."

The hub is expected to provide jobs for up to 250 people. Building is expected to start in the summer.

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