Motorway Service Area, Rugby
Moto Hospitality Limited has invested £40 million to develop a new Motorway Service Area (MSA) at J1, M6 near Rugby. There was a clear need to provide additional facilities to aid driver-safety along this stretch of the road network and the creation of 215 jobs played a hugely important role in the growth of Rugby’s economy.
Key to the success of this project was robust and sensitive engagement with those living closest to the site. Locals were invited to meet with members of the project team on a 1:1 basis to discuss their own very specific issues.
Rugby Borough Councillors were also invited to hear about the plans in more detail which culminated in one councillor writing in support of the proposals. An all-day, pop-up stall held in the market in Rugby on a Saturday was invaluable as it allowed us to speak with residents who were generally supportive of the proposals.
Digital methods of consultation also enabled us to reach potential users of the MSA, particularly the HGV community, who played a large part in demonstrating the need for and importance of the proposals beyond the immediate Rugby area.
After the application was submitted we identified and encouraged those in favour of the proposals to write to the council in support of the application. This was important as the village closest to the site voiced their opposition strongly.
We continued to engage with and brief key stakeholders, monitor the opponents and observe planning committee sessions. Just before the committee, we sent a briefing to members of the planning committee which visually summarised the key benefits of the scheme and rebutted the points we knew would be raised by the opponents. The scheme received near-unanimous approval and is now open for business.
- 215new jobs created
- Mobilised the HGV community to demonstrate the importance of the proposals beyond the immediate area