The proposed site comprises approximately 6.3 hectares of land. The site lies to the north of the existing development at NETPark and to the south of the residential development on the site of the former Community Hospital. It lies adjacent to, and would be accessed by car, foot and cycle directly from the B1278.
It would also be accessible by public transport, with existing bus stands lying within 100m of the proposed site access.
The site is currently allocated as land ‘safeguarded’ for future expansion of NETPark in the County Durham Plan. The Local Plan acknowledges that the site will not be required for development in association with NETPark before 2035, and given current build out rates at NETPark it is unlikely to be needed for employment development before 2045.
A Preliminary Ecological Appraisal of the site has been undertaken. This has confirmed that the site is subject to few ecological constraints. While around 200m of existing hedgerow would be lost through the development; it is proposed to mitigate this loss through the establishment of in excess of 250m of new hedgerow to the north of the proposed track facility.
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