Contractors appointed for £60m Leeds Skelton Lake Services

Following detailed approval of proposals to build a ‘new concept’ £60m Motorway Service Area (MSA) at Junction 45 of the M1, three contractors have been appointed to deliver the extensive Enabling Works, Soft Landscaping Works and the construction of the Main Buildings. The appointments allow investment owner and operator, Extra MSA Group, to achieve the confirmed programme for ‘Leeds Skelton Lake Services’ opening in Summer 2019.

The Enabling Works consisting of extensive earthworks remodelling and construction of a dual carriageway and roundabout to serve both the MSA and some 1800 new homes, connecting directly with the existing Motorway Junction, are being undertaken by Sheffield based Henry Boot Construction limited. This phase of Construction Works is underway and due for completion by February 2019.

The second phase includes the construction of the Food Court Building and a 100-bedroom Hotel, together with the parking areas and on-site roadways. The contract for this phase has been awarded to the Leeds team from Morgan Sindall Construction Limited and will be delivered through their office in nearby Hunslet. The attractively designed Food Court Building will provide a wide range of popular and high quality Food & Beverage brands, together with ancillary retail outlets, Wildlife Visitor Centre, Business Centre and dedicated space for community activities.

The overall 30 acre MSA site will also be extensively landscaped commensurate with its Lakeside setting, including significant new tree planting, dog walking areas, new footpath and cycle links, in order to enhance the nature conservation attributes of Skelton Lake. Wetherby based Brambledown Landscapes Limited has been awarded the contract for this phase of works. Brambledown will implement the landscape scheme designed by Knaresborough based landscape architects Smeeden Foreman, and will be sourcing most of the project’s plant stock from York based Johnsons of Whixley, one of Europe’s largest commercial nurseries.

Extra will be making further announcements on other phases of the overall development later this Summer.

Commenting on the appointments, Andrew Long, CEO of Extra MSA Group, said: “Each appointment of the respective Contractors marks an important ‘milestone’ for the Leeds Skelton Lake MSA project, bringing the innovative design to life over the next 12 months. Work during construction will create circa 400 jobs, with approximately 300 new full-time equivalent jobs when Leeds Skelton Lake Services are operational. We are working with our selected contractors to ensure these jobs benefit local people through FTE positions as well as work experience and apprenticeships.”

“This is a much-needed infrastructure project for Leeds City Region and the wider Motorway Network. It will further boost the region’s economy and also delivers an extensive package of social and environmental benefits. Overall the carefully considered innovative nature of the design and range of facilities to be provided will help to set a new standard for Motorway Services in the UK, providing an attractive and relaxing destination for Motorway users and the Regions as a whole.”

Dave Woodhouse, Strategic Business Manager of Sheffield Based Henry Boot said: “We are delighted to be delivering the first phase of this exciting, innovative project. Our expertise in infrastructure and civil engineering projects has fitted well with Extra’s philosophy of quality and right first time approach”.

Morgan Sindall’s managing director for the North, Barry Roberts, said: “We are really excited about working with Extra to deliver this phase of the project, realising the vision that has been set out by our customer. This is a major investment for the region and we will do everything we can to support and work closely with Extra to create local jobs and offer opportunities to local people and companies during the construction works.”

The high-quality, innovate building design features sweeping and exposed long span glulam timber beams with an undulating ‘Living Green Roof’ to tie into the natural landscape. The bright and spacious building interior also includes a new Visitor Centre, community space and an upper-floor viewing deck overlooking Skelton Lake and the surrounding landscape. By improving footpath and cycle connectivity for Skelton Lake, the development will also form part of a ‘Green Corridor’ linking the Grade 1 listed Temple Newsam House and Parklands to the north of the MSA, with Rothwell Country Park to the south.

Skelton Lake Services are set to open during Summer 2019 and will significantly improve road safety for this section of the Motorway Network.  The site is located at the ’gateway’ to the Leeds Enterprise Zone also located off M1 J45, together with direct links to the City Centre along the upgraded A63 dual carriageway route.