‘Minor’ changes to energy project plans in Keighley

Changes are planned to a £120 million scheme for a ‘clean energy’ complex in Keighley.

But those behind the pioneering project, which could create 550 jobs, say the proposed amendments are “minor”.

Permission to make the alterations is being sought from Brad-ford Council, which is still to rule on the original planning application.

Three plants for recycling waste are proposed on the derelict former gas works site in Airedale Road, alongside the Aire Valley trunk road at Marley.

The scheme would also include an education and visitor centre, plus a four-storey office building, parking and landscaping.

And a data storage centre and offices would be built on land in nearby Dalton Lane.

Agent John Steel – of JO Steel Consulting – said this week that changes to the planned layout at the Airedale Road site were needed due to so-called easements, which protect water pipes beneath the ground.

“As we have gone through the various consultations, we have found where Yorkshire Water has easements, which we have to steer clear of,” he added.

“As a result, the intention is to site the visitor centre where the offices would have been and vice versa.

“It is a minor change and it’s quite common for this to arise with big planning applications. We have also provided the council with additional technical information.”

Mr Steel hopes the amendments will not create any delay to the timescale for the local authority’s regulatory and appeals committee to consider the scheme.

“The hope was the plans would go before the committee next month, and that is still the hope, although, of course, it is in the council’s hands,” he said. “We are working hard as a team to achieve that.”

Already-processed commercial and industrial waste will be taken to the plants, which together will be capable of producing 80 million kWh of electricity a year – virtually enough to power the whole town.

If the project gets the green light, work could start in the autumn and the complex be operational by the end of 2016.

Three hundred jobs would be created during the construction phase and, once operational, 80 people would be employed in the plants and 170 in the offices.

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