ALL ROADS OPEN FOR BUSINESS AT FUTURA PARK
28 March 2013
Crane Boulevard, the final new access road within Futura Park, Ipswich’s major new retail and business park, was officially opened today. A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held to mark this latest milestone in the regeneration of the 44-acre former industrial site between Ransomes Way and Nacton Road.
Paul Isaacs, Managing Director of AquiGen, the developer behind Futura Park, hosted the road opening formalities. He was joined by Paul Richardson, Vice President / General Manager of Crane Limited (Building Services & Utilities), along with representatives from Crane who were previously employed on the site.
Crane Boulevard, which links with Nacton Road, provides access to Futura Park’s new flagship John Lewis at home and Waitrose stores. The road is named in recognition of the site’s history. Crane Limited was founded in Ipswich in 1919, the UK arm of US engineering giant Crane Co, and a foundry was operated on the site for 83 years. It only closed down in 2008 when production was moved to China. However subsidiary company, Crane Limited (Building Services & Utilities) continues to operate as a thriving company in Ipswich.
Paul Isaacs, Managing Director of AquiGen, commented: “The name Crane has been linked with this site for a long time, so we are pleased to be able to let that name live on. The opening of Crane Boulevard means that all of the new roads we have created to service Futura Park are now open to the public. Crane Boulevard will provide an alternative public access route to the John Lewis at home and Waitrose stores, in addition to the other road we opened James Bennett Avenue, which connects with Ransomes Way. These roads will also serve the second phase of retail units, which will open later this year, as well as the offices and commercial space yet to come.”
Futura Park is fast becoming an economic success story for the region. The development’s first phase, the 26,500 sq ft Waitrose and a 43,000 sq ft John Lewis at home, opened in November and trading has been strong since its launch. This high quality anchor tenant helped kick-start the rest of the development and AquiGen recently announced that retailers have now been signed for all of the space in phase two. Construction is due to start in April and the stores are expected to open in August.
Outline planning permission has been granted for 25 acres of employment land to accommodate up to 600,000 square feet of new offices, warehousing and industrial space. AquiGen is also adding extensive landscaping, open spaces and new trees to ensure that Futura Park becomes a vibrant and attractive place for people to shop or work.