A huge state of the art laboratory at the Syngenta site on Jealott’s Hill in Warfield has been granted planning permission.

The plans see a number of smaller buildings demolished on site, to be replaced with a larger three-storey one with a floorspace of nine and a half square kilometres.

But agricultural science and technology company Syngenta says the building has been designed to fit in with is surroundings – including the nearby Hawthorndale House mansion, which is also on site, and is a locally listed building.

It also says its plans don’t include recruiting extra staff, which it says means it shouldn’t need extra parking.

A design statement on behalf of Syngenta said: “The local context for the building has heavily influenced the development of the design.

“While it is essential that the internal layout of the building meets the specific needs of the users as Science space, it must also respect and respond to its immediate surroundings.”

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Planning officers at Bracknell Forest Council gave the project the go-ahead on Wednesday, September 27. But they have asked Syngenta to provide a travel plan showing how the company will try to reduce the number of single-person car journeys to the site.

And they want to see plans showing plans for secure cycle parking facilities, including showers and lockers for staff.

Planners also note that the new building is very different to the nineteenth century Hawthorndale House. But they say the demolition of other buildings will help to offset this, and that the new building won’t be higher than the nearby mansion.

And they say that, though the site is in the Green Belt, the work will take place only on already developed land.

Their decision report says: “The proposed demolition of some of the existing unsympathetic modern buildings on the site would help to mitigate some of the visual impact of the new, large building and the heights proposed for the building would be no greater than the height of Hawthorndale.

“The proposed design is very different in character to Hawthorndale but would work as a landmark which would contrast with the historic building as an entirely new, modern development within a setting which does not detract from the locally listed building, but relates to the scientific function of the site.”

Syngenta says the building, known as Biostar, will boost its biological research carried out on site.

Its design statement says: “Project BioSTaR (Biological Science Technology and Research) is required to establish a central biological sciences laboratory facility at Jealott’s Hill, encompassing BioSciences, Biology Research, Biologicals and several smaller functions in a single purpose-built state of the art facility.