Property boss Rick Parisi threatens to pull investment from Littleport if East Cambs planners allow concrete plant expansion

PUBLISHED: 15:00 02 February 2018 | UPDATED: 15:00 02 February 2018

F P McCann of Littleport apply for £2million expansion. PHOTO: Harry Rutter

F P McCann of Littleport apply for £2million expansion. PHOTO: Harry Rutter

Archant

Property entrepreneur Rick Parisi has threatened to pull the plug on further investment into Littleport if planners allow concrete manufacturers to double the size of its existing factory in Wisbech Road.

F P McCann claim the expansion will create up to 90 extra jobs but Mr Parisi says it would “degrade the quality of the area as a centre of business and drive away businesses that might otherwise have considered relocating to Littleport”.

Mr Parisi has told East Cambs planners – who have spent nearly two years considering the latest application – that if the development goes ahead “then we will not be prepared to invest further in the locality”.

He says the type of high quality businesses that his companies seek to attract “would not want to be adjacent to a massive operation of this type. This will make neighbouring property very difficult to let.”

Through his portfolio of interests, Mr Parisi owns Black Bank Business Centre which is a mile from the McCann’s site and home to around 25 firms with a further 14 units in the pipeline.

His Paragon Land and Estates Ltd also owns a business centre almost adjacent to McCann’s which has permission for around 10 units.

“In addition we are considering buying a further four ace site which has planning permission for an eco-business park and is also very close to McCann’s,” he said.

With £8 million already invested into the Cambridge Innovation Park over five years and £30million worth of new developments for three Cambridge sites, his company’s investment is expected to have brought 2,500 “high quality” jobs to the area by 2020.

Mr Parisi said if McCann’s won approval “it would have a serious negative impact on both the quality and quantity of jobs in the locality.

“It would bring in some low quality jobs but would cost a much larger number of high quality jobs.

“I am sure that this opinion will reflect the feelings of most of the businesses in the vicinity.”

Littleport Parish Council says they expect the district council to use “due diligence to look at complaints” about the McCann’s proposals.

The first application by McCann’s was approved by East Cambs Council but the decision quashed on appeal.

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