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Waste plant's £6million boost to business
BASILDON’S Courtauld Road waste plant project is boosting local businesses to the tune of more than £6million.
Urbaser Balfour Beatty, the consortium behind the controversial £800million processing plant, says it has signed up a wide range of companies in the area to work on the site.
Concrete contractor Hopes Construction Materials and plywood distributor Panel Supplies, both on the nearby Burnt Mills Industrial Estate, are among those to benefit.
The plant will process 417,000 tonnes a year of black bag rubbish from across Essex, removing material which can be, recycled, and leaving the rest to be reduced by composting.
The fencing company’s contracts manager. Keith Alden-Smith said: “It’s lovely to have a job on our doorstep.
“It doesn’t happen very often. We normally have to travel to London or elsewhere in the country. We get the odd local job, but nothing on this scale. It’s a huge project for us.
“There were a few shortlisted fencing companies, and I think it mainly came down to the fact we were closest.
“Obviously, our health and safety standards and our pricing also played a part.
“This is a long project for us and it’s been a big boost, knowing we’ve had it to keep us going all year.”
Plans for the Courtauld Road waste plant first emerged in 1998, but faced tough opposition from residents and environmental campaigners who feared the plant would reduce the value of nearby homes, cause unpleasant smells and attract unwanted extra lorry traffic.
More than 5,000 people signed a petition, objecting to the plan, but it won planning permission from Essex County Council in July 2012 and got the final thumbs up from the Environment Agency in March.
The consortium’s project manager Richard Lancaster said a total of £120million would be spent on building materials and contractors within the next year.
He added: “Construction is on schedule and more locally available contracts will become available over the coming months.
“So far we have put in more than 6,000 concrete piles to support the building and we have now started putting up the main structural steel.
“We have 200 people working on site, making sure everything is done safely and at minimal disruption to our neighbours.
“Although we have permission to work later into the evening, we took a decision to hire extra piling equipment, so the noisy work could stop at 6pm, out of consideration to those living nearby.”
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