Mercedes’ Formula 1 team’s plan to expand its Brackley plant campus in 2023 is facing opposition from local businesses, who fear the proposed use of a small industrial road as the main access route will increase traffic and negatively impact their operations.
‣ Mercedes’ Formula 1 team announced plans to expand its Brackley plant campus in 2023, which has been met with strong opposition from local businesses.
‣ The main point of contention is Mercedes’ plan to use a small industrial road as the main access to the F1 campus, which is expected to significantly increase traffic during rush hour.
‣ Local businesses claim they were not informed about the proposed use of the road and fear the increased traffic will negatively affect their operations.
‣ Mercedes insists it has gone through all the procedures properly and has consulted with local authorities and emergency services to ensure minimal impact on businesses and traffic flow.
2023. Big news from Mercedes’ Formula 1 team. They’re planning a massive expansion of their Brackley plant campus. Toto Wolff, the team boss, even dropped the phrase “Silicon Valley-like village”. Sounds impressive, right? But not everyone’s thrilled. Local businesses? They’re not on board. They’re worried about the impact on their operations.
Brackley’s not rolling out the welcome mat
The main bone of contention? Mercedes’ plan to use a small industrial road as the main access to the F1 campus. The municipality’s done the math. They’re predicting a tenfold increase in traffic during the morning rush hour.
And guess what? Lots of businesses are located along this road. They’re not exactly cheering for Mercedes’ plans. They claim they were left in the dark about the proposed road use. One local businessman didn’t mince his words when he spoke to the Northampton Chronicle. “Everyone’s livid. Right now, we’ve got free access. No issues getting staff or commercial vehicles in,” he said.
He didn’t stop there. “Imagine hundreds of cars trying to get in and out early morning and late night. It’ll be total chaos. Our customers, suppliers, employees – they’ll all have to leave home earlier to dodge the traffic,” he added. He feels small businesses are being overlooked. “It’s like ‘we’re Mercedes, we do what we want, deal with it’. That’s just a slap in the face to businesses that have been here as long as they have.”
Other local entrepreneurs echo his sentiments. They feel helpless. “What can we do? It’s a powerful company. We just don’t get why it has to be this way when they could reorganise to avoid impacting anyone,” one said. Another added, “We were kept in the dark. If it didn’t affect us, we wouldn’t care, but we don’t even know that.”
Mercedes’ side of the story
Mercedes has big dreams for the new campus. They insist they’ve followed all the procedures. “We’ve consulted extensively with the local roads authority and the National Highways Agency. They’ve checked and verified our independent traffic studies,” a spokesperson for the F1 team said.
They’ve also touched base with local emergency services. They’ve agreed on a plan. It includes road improvements to ensure easy access from St James Road, the access road in question. “We’ve studied the concerns raised by the specialist roads consultant hired by one of the local companies. We want to ensure our works have the least possible impact on businesses,” Mercedes said. They’ve got the local Highways team’s approval. They’re also planning to work on local roads to ease traffic.
Mercedes wants to keep the peace. “As a major employer in Brackley, we always aim to maintain good relations with our stakeholders. We want to maximise our positive impact on the local environment. We’ll continue to do so during this process,” they said.