A controversial planning system, widely blamed for Robin Hood’s continuing woes, is due to face the firing squad, after a report revealed that the South Yorkshire facility could lose over £1bn in investment and employment opportunities.
The Finningley and Rossington Regeneration Route Scheme (FARRRS) is an important road link capable of delivering heavy industry from the M18 motorway. As of August 2009, it remains unfinished, stuck in a strange state of limbo between the drawing board and the construction site.
According to Doncaster’s Chamber of Commerce, the completion of FARRRS would usher in a new era of prosperity for the local area, hauling Doncaster from recession, and burying fears about the viability of the Robin Hood site.
The Chamber went on to criticise government guidelines, which contribute over three thousand pages of protocol, but lack coherent frameworks for the development of critical infrastructure projects like the FARRRS route way.
“The planning process involved in a scheme of this magnitude could lay down sufficient obstacles to heavily delay or even halt the scheme” Chamber representative, Stephen Shore said.
Local investors are understandably vexed, believing the road to be an important facet of Doncaster’s future. If completed, FARRRS could provide 14,000 new jobs, and plough billions of pounds into the local economy.
Plans to construct an inland port – a huge container farm on the outskirts of Doncaster – could also be derailed by opaque planning procedures. Based in Rossington, the 180-hectare site would handle freight in cooperation with the nearby airport.
Opened in April 2005, Robin Hood Airport handles an average of one million customers a year.