Councillors have given the green light for a new transport hub on derelict land at Lackenby on the northern edge of the Teesworks industrial site.

The hub, for which outline planning permission was sought and granted, is primarily aimed at heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) with about 150 parking spaces being provided.

There will also be an amenity block containing shower and toilet facilities for HGV drivers, a hydrogen re-fuelling station and gatehouses controlling onward access into the Lackenby and British Steel sites.

More than 200 car parking spaces are also being incorporated into the plans, along with bus stops.

It is anticipated the development will be in place ahead of the planned arrival of a new ‘electric arc’ steelmaking facility British Steel hopes to bring forward, for which planning permission has also been granted.

Chris Musgrave, chairman of Teesworks, said: “This complex is a key part of our wider masterplan for Teesworks and will offer vital facilities for tenants and their workers.

“Securing this planning now will ensure we meet the increasing demands for our infrastructure as British Steel’s new development comes online and more investors move onto the site.

“I’m delighted councillors have approved these plans and we’re looking forward to making more progress.”

A report for members of Redcar and Cleveland Council’s regulatory committee said detailed layouts and designs were not yet available for all the elements included in the transport hub with the scale and impacts of any structures to be built being considered at the so-called reserved matters approval stage. 

Earlier this week it was confirmed that groundworks for a new 1,500 space park and ride facility at Teesworks intended to cater for workers on major projects such as the SeAH Wind offshore wind monopile facility and the Net Zero Teesside gas-fired plant had been completed.

Neil Westwick, from Lichfields, a planning consultancy advising Teesworks, told a meeting of the committee: “The transport hub is a complimentary offer to the park and ride at the other end of the site next to Steel House.

“HGVs can turn up at any time, sometimes they come earlier, sometimes later, and they need somewhere to park.”

A number of conditions were attached to the planning permission, including the requirement for a scheme that would monitor the traffic generated by the development during morning and evening peak periods that would use the A1053 Greystone Road, the A1085 Trunk Road and the A174.

This will have to be submitted to and approved by the council in consultation with the National Highways Agency.

Councillor Malcolm Head described how HGVs would frequently park up in lay-bys overnight in the area, which was “not very safe”, and said he hoped some of these would be accommodated in the new facility.

Committee chairman, Councillor Stuart Smith said the land in question being used for the development was derelict, adding: “It will regenerate the area and provide jobs.”

The report said: “The principle of the development is one that is acceptable as the site is situated within the defined limits of development and allocated for uses associated with promoting economic growth, which the proposed development is considered to meet. 

“The application raises no issues in terms of neighbour amenity, crime prevention, ecology or flood risk. 

“The development does not raise any highway safety concerns.”

Separately at the same meeting councillors also approved planned alterations to the A66/A1053 Tees Dock roundabout in Grangetown to include a new leg providing access to the Lackenby site.

The existing highway will also be widened  providing an additional lane on each of the three existing legs of the roundabout to the west, east and south.

The applicant, the South Tees Development Corporation, said the alterations would increase the roundabout’s capacity and cut driver delays.

The meeting heard from a council officer who said the existing roundabout was predicted to reach capacity limits by 2033.

In a representation made over the plans, Teesport operator PD Ports said measures needed to be put in place so the changes did not cause disruption to the adopted public highway network during construction.

A subsequent undertaking by the applicant said it would ensure appropriate measures were taken along these lines.

Councillor Philip Thomson said it was “absolutely essential” that the appropriate infrastructure was in place to allow the Teesworks development to proceed at pace, although he did express some environmental concerns.

Both applications, for which funding is being provided by the Tees Valley Combined Authority courtesy of a £1bn package of transport improvements announced earlier this year, were considered by a much reduced in size committee with a total of six councillors absent.