AMAZON is planning to open a new distribution hub on the outskirts of Basingstoke, documents suggest.

The multinational company looks set to take one of four warehouses proposed on Oakdown Farm, adjacent to Junction 7 of the M3.

Ever since plans for the site, known as Basingstoke Gateway, were revealed by The Gazette in June, rumours have been circulating surrounding the eventual occupiers.

The Gazette has now uncovered documents which seem to indicate that online retail giant Amazon is set to take the largest of the warehouses.

The file name of a planning document submitted to Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council indicates that Newlands, which is proposing the site, has a folder for ‘Amazon ARS Basingstoke’ as one of its 2020 projects.

Basingstoke Gazette:

The name of this file indicates Amazon's interest.

Newlands said that it cannot disclose the identity of the future occupier because of “legally binding commercial negotiations”, instead telling The Gazette that the application was submitted “in direct response to occupier interest”. Amazon said it doesn’t comment on rumours or speculation.

Campaign group Clean Air Green Environment, set up to protest against the warehouses, has labelled the latest development “bad news”.

Spokesperson Christine Northam said: “You don’t get eight hundred movements in and eight hundred movements out without some emissions.

“Then there will be all the grey traffic as it is called of people going to work there.There are going to be 3,500 people living very near to that when these houses [at the golf course and Hounsome Fields] are built.

“It is not just carbon dioxide and the nitrous oxide but all the noise, sound and light. The quality of life will be awful.”

Some of her concerns were echoed by Conservative councillor Dan Putty, who represents the nearby ward of Hatch Warren and Beggarwood.

He said: that the motorway junction, which serves most of Basingstoke including the new Manydown project, would not be able to cope.“I have already said that if junction seven is not improved massively, it is a no no. If it is Amazon then we will have hundreds, maybe thousands, of vehicles accessing the site.

“We will be really gridlocked most of the time because infrastructure is not ready to take on such a volume of traffic which it is going to generate. If something like this is coming, they should have their own road to access it. If it is Amazon, they have the money to do these things.“It is going to provide employment, but is it going to provide employment for local people?”

Newlands has history working with Amazon, advertising how its directors, under a different name, developed facilities for the retail giant.

So far, 305 out of 314 comments submitted on the application by members of the public were objections.

An outline application was submitted for the site in August, with a full planning application then drawn-up for the largest warehouse, which is 630,000 square feet.

The site as a whole contains 1.25 million square feet of distribution space, and would bring £150 million of investment to the borough as well as 1,500 new jobs.

Newlands hopes pending planning permission, development will begin in early 2021, with occupation by autumn 2022.