In mid-2020, Alder King concluded a complex multi-disciplinary project for the Avonmouth-based logistics business Kings Heavy Haulage.
The project, involving our agency, valuation, planning and building consultancy teams, began in 2012 when Kings learned that its Avonmouth depot stood in the path of a major utility infrastructure project. Alder King was asked to advise the firm on its options.
Discussions revealed that Kings could not safely co-habit the site and was ultimately facing a compulsory purchase order if they could not be relocated to suitable alternative premises. With specialist input from our agency and professional services teams, agreement was finally reached to sell the site to the utility company and use the proceeds to part fund the Kings business relocation.
Facing a tight timescale to comply with the infrastructure build programme, Alder King began a search for an existing property that met Kings’ specific requirements. With nothing suitable available on the market, Alder King researched and presented a shortlist of development site options. Kings subsequently acquired a four acre plot at Cabot Park in Avonmouth which enabled them to double the size of their depot. They also agreed a short-term lease on its original site to allow it to remain operational throughout the development process.
Our building consultancy team was engaged early within the overall process to assist with development feasibility and cost advice and to negotiate the terms of the necessary development funding agreement with the utility company. The completed project cost well in excess of £5 million and was unusual in that part of the funding was from a third party to facilitate the infrastructure project via this development funding agreement, meaning all costs had to be substantiated and audited, increasing the level of management and negotiation beyond that ordinarily associated with a project of this scale. This work was additional to Alder King’s project management role coordinating all aspects of the design, construction and relocation into the new depot, including obtaining the necessary statutory consents for the development.
As part of the development process, Alder King’s planning consultancy team submitted a planning application to Bristol City Council in 2017 for the development of the new workshop facility, modern offices and a heavy haulage yard with associated facilities. Planning permission was secured the following year.
This was a challenging project with tight deadlines imposed by its role in a significant national infrastructure scheme and the build phase complicated by the temporary site closure and subsequent working restrictions brought about by Covid-19. However the new depot headquarters was successfully completed to permit the national infrastructure project to continue.
Kings Heavy Haulage, which marked its 50th birthday last year, relocated to its new depot in late July 2020, a year after works began, and is now operating successfully.
Kings director, Richard King said: “We are delighted with the outcome of this project which would not have been possible without the devoted effort of Paul Hooper who spent several years working meticulously on our behalf, successfully conducting very difficult negotiations.”