IT could be full steam ahead for a proposal to build a major rail fright depot in South Derbyshire.
Severn Trent is likely to sign a contract with a developer in February to help with the creation of the controversial railhead, which has been proposed for Egginton Heath.
If plans are approved, the 619-acre site between Egginton and Etwall Common would provide some of the areas biggest firms, such as Biffa, JCB and Toyota, improved opportunities to transport goods and to receive supplies by rail.
While there has been speculation that the scheme could bring thousands of jobs to the area, some residents have expressed concern over the access to the site, as well as the increased noise which may come as a result of it being built.
John Lemmon, who represents Etwall for South Derbyshire District Council, said the next step for Severn Trent would be to determine where access to the site will be fromboth the A50 and A38.
He said: “There is a junction at the A38 and A50 which already exists.
“Now, whether that junction is the one which will eventually be used is quite interesting.”
Councillor Lemmon said a detailed plan for access to and fromthe site would have to be designed.
So far, no draft plans have been drawn up. However a detailed public consultation will be a requirement of the planning process.
Factors such as flooding, landscape and the environment will also have to be taken into consideration.
South Derbyshire District Council has met with the company this week to discuss the progress of the project.
Severn Trent has been unable to confirm how many jobs could be created by the project, but the amount was likely to include jobs in construction.
A spokesman for the company said: “The site is owned by Etwall Land Ltd which is a subsidiary company of Severn Trent Plc.
“The selection of a partner for this project has reached an advanced stage and the team are looking forward to consulting with the public once a contract is in place.”