Eco Park

Eco Park is our planned 100 acre green development in the Stroud District: a centre of excellence for sport and green business in Gloucestershire and a new home for Forest Green Rovers.

Eco Park

It will be a place where green businesses and technology companies come together and share ideas: a real focal point of creativity and innovation for the area and a part of the green industrial revolution that’s beginning to take off around the world. 

Located by junction 13 of the M5, half of Eco Park will be dedicated to creating state-of-the-art sporting facilities, including a stadium for Forest Green Rovers, training fields, 4G pitches, multi-disciplinary sporting facilities, as well as a sports science hub. 

The intention is that Eco Park will be a centre for local sports and sports science, all built around the new FGR stadium.

The initial plan also includes public access to a wide variety of health and leisure activities, allowing people in the Stroud District and beyond to use the facilities and equipment. 

The opposite part of Eco Park will comprise a green technology business park with sustainably built commercial offices and light industrial units, giving Eco Park the potential to create up to 4,000 jobs. The final element of the proposal is a nature reserve located on the west side of the M5. 

The overall concept also includes the potential development of a public transport hub, including a Stroud Park and Ride, and will also see Ecotricity help with the restoration of the Stroudwater canal under the M5.

If you'd like any further information, get in touch with us on ecopark@ecotricity.co.uk.

Click here to download the Concept Design plan.

 

Stadium Design – 9 November 2016

Stadium design by Zaha Hadid Architects

 

Zaha Hadid Architects will design the stadium at the centre of the Eco Park development which will include a 5,000 capacity stadium with state-of-the-art sporting facilities, including grass and all-weather training pitches, publicly accessible multi-disciplinary facilities, and a sports science hub.

Following a seven month international competition, Forest Green Rovers selected the winner from over 50 entries from around the world, including Sweden, Germany, France, Britain and the United States. Forest Green Rovers’ new stadium and Eco Park aims to be carbon neutral or carbon negative, including measures such as the provision of on-site renewable energy generation. The buildings on the site, and their embodied energy, play a substantial role in achieving this ambitious target and demonstrate sustainable architecture can be dynamic and beautiful.

The really standout thing about this stadium is that it’s going to be almost entirely made of wood – the first time that will have been done anywhere in the world. Unlike most buildings, around three quarters of the lifetime carbon impact of any stadium comes from its building materials, while the opposite is true for residential and business buildings, where three quarters of the lifetime carbon impact come from the operation of the building. The importance of using ethically sourced wood, is not only that it’s a naturally occurring renewable material, but that it has very low embodied carbon compared to alternatives such as concrete and steel. So the stadium will have the lowest embodied carbon of any sports stadium in the world.

Zaha Hadid Architects have won numerous architectural prizes, including the Royal Institute of British Architects’ (RIBA) top Stirling Prize two years running, for the MAXXI Museum in Rome (2010) and the Evelyn Grace Academy in Brixton (2011). Founder Dame Zaha Hadid, who sadly passed away earlier this year, was awarded the first Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2004 – often referred to as the ‘Nobel Prize of architecture’. They also designed the aquatic centre for the London 2012 Olympics.

 

Further Information Submitted – 16 September 2016

We’ve now submitted Further Environmental Information to Stroud District Council in support of our outline planning application for Eco Park at Junction 13 - Planning Application Number: S.16/0043/OUT.

This additional information addresses a number of comments sent to the Council from bodies such as Highways England, Natural England and Gloucestershire County Council.

The design of the proposal has also evolved, with key changes being:

  • Traffic lights for Junction 13 of the M5;
  • Car parking for the stadium increased from 458 to 886 spaces – far exceeding the existing 228 spaces at The New Lawn;
  • A footbridge across the A419 linking the Sports Complex and Green Technology Hub;
  • Access for buses, cycles and pedestrians from Grove Lane to the Green Technology Hub;
  • Improvements to the cycle route between Eco-Park and Stonehouse;
  • Cycle route and footpath moved to the south of the A419 to provide better and safer access to Eco-Park;
  • A reduction in flood lighting at the Sports Complex, and provision of lights along the proposed dual carriageway and Junction 13 to improve safety; and
  • A revision of the proposed community sports facilities to better provide for local sports – the illustrative athletics track has been replaced with a multi-sport all weather pitch.

The Further Environmental Information is available for download below. The full application can be found in our earlier blog post below, dated 26 January 2016:

Vol. 1 - Main Text (pdf, 1.73 MB)

Vol. 2 - Figures Part 1 (pdf, 29.43 MB)

Vol. 2 - Figures Part 2 (pdf, 43.32 MB)

Vol. 2 - Figures Part 3 (pdf, 37.77 MB)

Cover Letter (pdf, 274.92 kB)

 

FEI - Additional Documents

 

If you would like to view a hard copy of the application this can be done at the following locations:

Ecotricity Offices
Unicorn House, 7 Russell Street, Stroud, Gloucestershire, GL5 4UB
Monday-Thursday, 8:30am-5pm 
Friday, 8:30am-4pm

Stroud District Council
Ebley Mill, Ebley Wharf, Stroud, GL5 4UB
Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm

Or, you can come along to one of the following information days and meet the project team, see a 3D model of the development, and ask any questions you may have in person:

Eastington Village Hall
Millend Lane, Eastington, GL10 3AT
Thursday 17 November 2016, 2–7:30PM

Forest Green Rovers FC
The New Lawn, Nailsworth, GL6 0FG
Saturday 17 December 2016, 12–6PM

Comments on the application and the Further Information can be submitted to the Council (online or in writing) until shortly before the application goes to Committee. 

 

Summer newsletter – June 2016

 

Have Your Say – Support the Application – 30 January 2016

If you like the sound of our plans, you can support our application in one of three ways:

  1. Writing to the Planning Case Officer: David Lowin, FAO Planning, Stroud District Council, Ebley Mill, Ebley Wharf, Stroud, GL5 4UB;
  2. Emailing: planning@stroud.gov.uk; or
  3. Commenting on the Council’s website under the ‘Comments’ tab – use the shortened web address bit.ly/ecoparkstroud to go direct to the Eco Park planning page.

 

You just need to reference the Planning Application Number: S.16/0043/OUT.

Please be aware that any comments made at our Drop in Sessions last August and September related to our initial plans only and therefore did not go to the Council. If you want to have your say and support the application your comments need to go direct to the Council, in one of the three ways listed above.

We’ve created a document that may assist with this which is linked below, along with our latest newsletter.

Planning Overview (pdf, 210.95 kB)

 

Have Your Say – Application Validated – 26 January 2016

Stroud District Council has now validated our application (Planning Application Number: S.16/0043/OUT).

The full application is available for download below:

 

Volume 2 Main Text (pdf, 3.97 MB)

Volume 3 Figures Part 1 (pdf, 32.13 MB)

Volume 3 Figures Part 2 (pdf, 31.36 MB)

 

Planning Statement (pdf, 1.00 MB)

 

Location Plan (pdf, 1.17 MB)

Existing Site Plan (pdf, 2.64 MB)

 

If you would like to view a hard copy of the application this can be done at the following locations:

Ecotricity Offices
Unicorn House, 7 Russell Street, Stroud, Gloucestershire, GL5 4UB
Monday-Thursday, 8:30am-5pm 
Friday, 8:30am-4pm

Stroud District Council
Ebley Mill, Ebley Wharf, Stroud, GL5 4UB
Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm

 

Outline Application Submitted & Public Exhibitions - 19 January 2016

After 6 months of consultations, we’ve now submitted our formal outline planning application for Eco Park to Stroud District Council (SDC).

We’re really pleased to get to this stage – it’s been a very busy six months, talking to a lot of people and identifying all the key issues.

We’ve had a fantastic response from across the District, particularly during the drop-in sessions – 75% of people who gave us feedback at those sessions supported the plans, which is great.

Many people are excited about the prospect of new businesses coming to Gloucestershire, new jobs being created, new sports facilities being available, and a new stadium for Forest Green Rovers FC. 

There were some concerns too, of course – and we’ve taken those on board and addressed them in our application. 

As part of the application, we undertook a range of environmental assessments which have been compiled into an Environmental Statement and submitted to SDC. We also consulted with a wide range of statutory and non-statutory bodies, residents and local organisations over the last 6 months, which informed and influenced our application.

Once Stroud District Council validate our application, it will be available on the Council’s Planning webpage, and we’ll also place the application on this webpage.

To showcase our application, we are holding several more Public Exhibitions:

Eastington Village Hall
Millend Lane, Eastington, Gloucestershire, GL10 3AT
Thursday 04 February 2016
2-7PM

Stonehouse Town Hall
High Street, Stonehouse, Gloucestershire, GL10 2NG
Saturday 06 February 2016
9-11AM

We’ll have staff there to talk you through the project, from the facilities we have planned to the environmental assessments we have undertaken as part of the application. We would be pleased to hear your views and answer your questions, so do come along if you get the chance.

 

December Newsletter & Updated Concept Plan - 4 December 2015

We've just finished the December issue of the Eco Park newsletter. The newsletter includes the latest evolution of the Concept Plan, as wel as covering what we've been up to over the last month or so and what happens next.

A copy of the newsletter is available here:

 

Further Introductory Drop-in Session - 25 September 2015

Due to a high level of interest in the initial Introductory Drop-in Sessions for Eco Park in Nailsworth, Eastington and Stroud, Ecotricity in conjunction with Forest Green Rovers, is holding a further event in Stonehouse to introduce the Eco Park development.

Stonehouse Town Hall, Wednesday 30th September 2015, 3pm – 7:30pm

Representatives will be there to discuss the current proposal and the environmental assessment work being undertaken.

If you’re unable to make it to either of these days, but would like more info, get in touch with us at: ecopark@ecotricity.co.uk.

 

Outcome of Public Consultation Drop-Ins - 9 September 2015

Eco Park public consultation events have been so well attended that Ecotricity will hold a fifth ‘drop-in session’ – this time in Stonehouse.

Two drop-ins were held at Forest Green Rovers’ New Lawn stadium, one to engage with football fans on Monday 31st August and one for local residents on Wednesday 2nd September. The third event, which followed in Eastington was keenly attended, while a fourth drop-in held in Stroud saw the total number of visitors top the 400 mark across the four events.

There was a fantastic level of interest and lots of feedback was provided on the proposal in person and via the comments forms. 

The big issue for Forest Green and Nailsworth residents was the future of The New Lawn site, with Ecotricity and Forest Green Rovers personnel advising residents that the future of the site would be developed in consultation with the community. There were concerns that the land will be sold off to an external developer – our position is that we don't want to do this and would prefer to take responsibility for any development ourselves.

While over in Eastington the main discussions centered on traffic, site access, building on a greenfield site and access to facilities for the local community.

Traffic congestion around the site is an existing problem that needs fixing. Although works are planned to upgrade various roundabouts along the A419 to ease the follow of traffic, Ecotricity are undertaking an extensive study to find a solution that will facilitate the additional traffic movements that would be generated by Eco Park and expect to fund the road improvements as part of the development.

Further discussion points included: public transport, noise, lighting, flood-risk, ecology, jobs and economic benefit. 

We are very grateful to all those that left feedback. All of these issues and more will form part of the extensive environmental impact studies taking place as the planning process continues. 

The exhibition materials on display during the events can be found here (ZIP, 48MB).

Details of the Stonehouse event will follow.

If you cannot make any drop-in sessions but want to provide your feedback on the proposal – you can email ecopark@ecotricity.co.uk.

 

Public Consultation Drop-In Sessions Coming Up - 21 August 2015

Ecotricity will be holding a series of drop-in sessions as part of the public consultation for the Eco Park development.

Forest Green Rovers, The New Lawn Stadium, Nailsworth
Wednesday 2nd September 2015, 12:00 - 19:30

Eastington Village Hall, Eastington
Thursday 3rd September 2015, 12:00 - 19:30

Unicorn House (Ecotricity), Russell Street, Stroud
Tuesday 8th September 2015, 12:00 - 19:30

As part of the public consultation, the drop-in sessions are designed to allow people to view the initial concept design, ask any questions and for representatives from Ecotricity and FGR to gather feedback that can help inform and improve the proposal.

The first drop-in will be held on Wednesday 2nd September to enable Forest Greens residents to come along to view plans. 

The second drop-in on the Thursday will be held in Eastington Village Hall, so that residents that live in towns and villages around the Eco Park site at Junction 13 can provide feedback. 

While the final drop-in on the following Tuesday at Ecotricity's Unicorn House (opposite Bateman's Sports) in Stroud will allow another opportunity for residents, FGR fans and interested parties to view the plans and ask questions.

The newsletter posted to residents can be found here:

If people cannot make any of the drop-in sessions but want to provide feedback on the proposal they can email ecopark@ecotricity.co.uk.

 

Request for Scoping Opinion Submitted - July 2015

We are the very early stages of the proposal at the moment and are open to feedback on the overall concept.

One of the first stages is to request what is called a Scoping Opinion. The purpose of requesting a Scoping Opinion is to seek advice from Stroud District Council and statutory and non-statutory bodies on what the main impacts of the proposal are likely to be and to help determine what environmental aspects we need to assess.

We submitted the Scoping Opinion to Stroud District Council in July 2015, along with a Scoping Report. The Scoping Report included a number of maps identifying the land, a brief description of the proposal, a draft outline of the environmental assessments to be undertaken, and a concept plan providing an initial view of what the proposal could look like.

We will be holding a number of public consultation events in the coming weeks to introduce our proposals, get input from the community and take any questions you may have. The event is one of several opportunities to learn about Ecotricity and the proposal, ask questions and discuss your views. Details of the events will be advertised shortly.

If you would like to contact us with feedback on our initial proposals, get in touch on ecopark@ecotricity.co.uk.