Warehousing units take shape at Ipswich as demand rockets

The metal frames two of six speculative units under construction at Orwell Logistics Park at Nacton, near Ipswich

The first two of six speculative units taking shape at Orwell Logistics Park at Nacton, near Ipswich - Credit: Equation Properties

The first structures at a new logistics park off the A14 near Ipswich are 40% complete as demand for warehousing hits the roof, according to agents.

Orwell Logistics Park at Nacton – which lies on the approach to the Port of Felixstowe – is fast taking shape. 

The speculative industrial and distribution units comprise five units in the first phase of building works, and another unit in phase 2. The  the £80m project is expected to create up to 1,500 jobs.

International property investment management firm BentallGreenOak and its investment partner Equation Properties snapped up the 60-acre site at the start of 2021 with outline planning permission for new units to help serve a growing demand for warehousing space in the area.

Construction is 40% complete for Units 1 and 2 with steel work well advanced for both units – measuring 300,00sq ft and 255,300sq ft respectively. Cladding is beginning to be fitted, said agents Penn Commercial.

The first phase also includes buildings measuring 44,455sq ft, 53,790sq ft and 25,335sq ft – with the units available for pre-letting from the third quarter of 2022.
Phase 2 – a 500,000sq ft unit – will be available to pre-let from the second quarter of 2023, said Penn.

Vanessa Penn, managing director of Penn Commercial, said the firm was experiencing record demand for all types of logistics and distribution requirements – including warehousing, fulfilment, lorry parking and container hard-standing – but there was a lack of suitable stock across the region.

“Added to this, a number of key infrastructure priorities and developments – including Sizewell C and ‘Freeport East’ – have meant an increased requirement for warehousing and distribution facilities in Suffolk, particularly with our close proximity to the Port of Felixstowe, the UK’s largest container port,” she said.

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“We have also been receiving more enquiries from European logistics operators, as the UK’s more agile and flexible trade regime becomes ever-more attractive, post-Brexit.”   

They were expecting the significant demand to drive increased interest in the units being developed at Orwell Logistics Park over the coming months, she said.