Data centre could be built on land in Little Bushey Lane

A car boot sale site has been eyed up as a possible home for a new data centre.

The land in Bushey has been put forward for redevelopment after Hertsmere Borough Council put out a call for potential new employment sites.

The council is currently putting together its local plan which will list sites officers believe are most appropriate for housing and other forms of development.

Earlier this year, the council put out a final call for any new employment sites – with 21 responses received, including an application for Little Bushey Lane.

The land in question is on the corner of Little Bushey Lane and Aldenham Road, currently used on some weekends for car boot sales.

Property consultants Iceni Projects has put together a planning proposal which would see the green belt nine acre site transformed into a data centre.

The location has been chosen because of its proximity the the National Grid’s Elstree 400kV Substation – one of just four substations in the south east of England large enough to accommodate the requirements of a data centre hub.

Fibre optics laid along Little Bushey Lane, connecting to the M1, has also made this an attractive site for this type of development.

The left circle is the proposed site in Little Bushey Lane and circled right is the Elstree substation. Credit: Google Maps

The left circle is the proposed site in Little Bushey Lane and circled right is the Elstree substation. Credit: Google Maps

In its representations published on the council’s website, Iceni Projects says demand for data centres will “rise”.

A comment says: “The National Grid Elstree 400kV Substation and surrounding highway network provides the unique locational requirements needed to support a new data centre. In the UK and across the world, many businesses have been moving their IT networks and data to remote data centres, rather than store them on servers on site.

“With developments such as 5G and an increased demand for employees to work from home during and post-pandemic, this is a trend that will continue to increase and demand for data centres will rise.”

Iceni says the London and South East region is currently the second largest data centre location in the entire world.

If this site is selected in Hertsmere’s local plan, Iceni says it hopes it can secure full planning permission by next year.

This data centre proposal in Bushey is not the first to come forward in Hertsmere.

Plans have already been submitted to build a data centre on brownfield land off Elstree Way in Borehamwood.

The project is a joint application between Pure Data Centres and Panattoni; the latter is developing the site.

See more: Plans submitted for data centre in Borehamwood

Hillingdon Times | News