Councillors are being asked to approve a loan of up to £4 million to assist with the delivery of Suffolk Park, the business park extension in Bury St Edmunds.
Members of St Edmundsbury Borough Council’s cabinet are recommended to approve the loan, for ‘phase one’ infrastructure costs, when they meet on Tuesday.
A report to cabinet said the developer (Taylor Wimpey)/promoter (Jaynic Properties) proposes using the capital receipt from the sale of 10 acres of the Enterprise Zone (EZ) site to Bury company Treatt Plc towards the cost of constructing a spine road and associated services, but estimates show that will be insufficient to meet the large upfront costs required.
“Therefore a loan request has been received from the developer/promoter of the Enterprise Zone at Suffolk Park to cover the gap (temporary until further land sales come forward) in funding,” states the report.
It adds that speeding up the provision of on-site infrastructure could result in earlier occupation of the EZ and, therefore, additional business rates income for the council, while income from charging commercial interest rates on the ‘revolving investment loan’ would also allow the council to benefit from higher returns than it receives on its current financial investments.
The report concludes that approving the loan, which would be subject to due diligence, would enable the spine road to be completed by the end of this year, while refusing it could result in a delay.