SIR, — I was dismayed to see (Herts Advertiser letters, April 2) both support for and dismissal of the importance of the proposed Helioslough rail freight depot development. I think both points need addressing. I think the argument about it being good for
SIR, - I was dismayed to see (Herts Advertiser letters, April 2) both support for and dismissal of the importance of the proposed Helioslough rail freight depot development. I think both points need addressing.
I think the argument about it being good for jobs is spurious. What is proposed is a distribution depot - it makes nothing and in today's economic climate is not going to increase overall business. If successful it would only be moving jobs from one place to another. Assuming that it would be more mechanised than the depots it replaces, it might actually reduce employment.
You might argue that it is better for the jobs to be here but bearing in mind the wages in even mechanised warehousing operations, it is very unlikely many of the employees are going to be local. Also, in terms of "jobs per square metre", it is a very poor employer. Don't be taken in by this argument.
From the comments of Ray Oxley you would think that this is something relatively minor and may not affect many people. It is difficult to visualise the proposal and I think that people just do not understand the sheer scale and physical dominance this development would have.
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As I pointed out at the previous public inquiry, if you look at the volume of the proposed buildings, you could fit inside them every house in Park Street, Chiswell Green, Bricket Wood, London Colney and Colney Heath, as well as most of Radlett. In terms of size, this dwarfs Terminal 5 (rail freight depot approx 5.2m cubic metres; Terminal 5 approx 2.5m cubic metres).
For �400,000 the district council did a great job in defending St Albans. I just hope this time the Secretary of State, whoever they may be by the time this is determined at appeal, is somewhat more supportive than last time round.
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Park Street Lane, Park Street.