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£29.8M industrial logistics scheme transforms former landfill site in Reading

ISLAND Road West, a new prime urban logistics scheme in Reading, has seen the second phase of development completed this month on a former domestic landfill site off the A33.

Providing civil and structural engineering designs, BE Design has delivered a five-unit, industrial scheme over two phases, transforming a site which features domestic landfill with a depth of six metres. More than 34,160 sq ft has been delivered across two phases, with a global logistics firm pre-letting one of the units delivered in the second phase.

Director at the engineering and architecture practice BE Design, Stephen Oakden said: “There is a real demand for space to build residential and commercials schemes, and that is only on the increase. Developing on greenbelt land can be somewhat contentious, so we are seeing more and more former landfill sites and brownfield land around the UK being earmarked for redevelopment – meeting the demand and protecting greenbelt land at the same time.

“This move towards sustainable regeneration means that sites, such as Island Road West, now provide businesses with the real potential to turn dead-end land into usable – and profitable – space.”

First phase completed in 2017, with the second phase starting on site in 2018. During both phases of development, ground consolidation techniques – including rapid impact compaction – were employed to minimise the ongoing settlement and subsidence that can occur on landfill sites. As well as this, multiple safety measures have been employed to safely release gases from the decomposing landfill matter into the atmosphere.

“Of course, landfill sites present a lot of unique challenges when it comes to construction, which have to be considered at the very base of any design service but, as long as the environmental challenges are met with practical and safe solutions, construction on sites such as Island Road West in Reading can be just as successful as developments elsewhere.

“By taking careful measurements both before and after ground improvement techniques are applied to sites, we are able to measure the amount of consolidation achieved, and this data is likely to prove invaluable in the future are more former landfill sites are earmarked for regeneration.”

Two of the five units delivered across the two phases delivered by BE Design remain available to let.