Proposals

Proposal

View updated proposal

Our preliminary masterplan considers the site’s context and constraints and has incorporated early comments and feedback from stakeholders. This has enabled the masterplan to have a concept and identity.

The application is outline which means what will come forward will be designed by the data centre operator specific to their own requirements provided they stay within the limits that we define. Their proposal may look different from what we have shown (for example they may have a number of buildings), but these will look no taller or larger than the single building we have shown.

Station Road Sketch
Station Road Sketch

A new Data Centre at its heart will underline Slough’s importance as one of Europe’s primary locations for Data Centres.

  • Includes a vibrant and active street front along Station Road, including a mix of offices, commercial, leisure, cafe uses, residential and possible community use. This will reinforce the connection between Langley and the railway station which is soon to be served by Crossrail.
  • Unlike the current Langley Business Centre buildings, the proposed Data Centre is well set back from the site boundaries and adjacent houses.
  • The Data Centre will be screened by densely planted landscaped buffer zones around the perimeter of the site – this will reinforce the existing perimeter trees to be retained.
  • The current narrow and intimidating path running along the northern railway boundary, will be significantly widened and upgraded to provide a much safer and visually attractive link.
  • Data Centres, in contrast to industrial estates and business parks generate a very low volume of traffic.

What is a Data Centre?

Here’s the formal definition: A Data Centre is a building used to house computing equipment such as servers along with associated components such as telecommunications, network and storage systems.

But what does this actually mean? Data Centres house computers so that they can…

  • process, manage, store and transmit data and
  • talk to each other or to digital equipment in other Data Centres or in offices, homes, vehicles and satellites.

Business processes, government services, telecommunications, transport infrastructures all depend on computers interacting in this way, exchanging digital information.

Many of your everyday activities also rely on Data Centre processes, including obvious things like using your smartphone or the internet or sending email, and less obvious things like doing your shopping or catching a train.

In a typical day we will use Data Centres dozens, if not hundreds of times. Here’s how…

Station Road Frontage

We recognise the importance of providing an active frontage onto Station Road for the overall improvement of the Langley area.

Our emerging proposal could provide:

  • Mixed-use building(s) to provide a suitable active frontage to Station Road.
  • Retail/restaurant related activity on the ground floor(s) with residential apartments or offices above.
  • A new appearance from Station Road screening the Data Centre.
  • A significantly upgraded public pathway between the site and the railway perimeter.
  • Car parking provision.
  • Enhanced public realm.

Landscape & Access

The Landscape Strategy is a particularly important aspect of the preliminary design and masterplan for the Langley Business Centre site.

The existing mature tree planting around the site’s perimeter will be reinforced by dense tree screen planting.

The narrow and uninviting pedestrian link to Langley Station along the northern boundary of the site will be significantly widened and enhanced to provide an attractive and safe link to the station.

Langley Access Plan

Parking
Parking will be provided on-site and will be in accordance with policy standards. Parking for the Data Centre will be based on a detailed understanding of other operators and the demand for parking that they create.

Cycle Provision
Secure, high quality cycle parking will be provided for all users within the site. The spaces will be covered to ensure the spaces can be used in all weather conditions. The location of the site in proximity to local residents and the Town Centre means that cycling will be strongly encouraged where possible.

Local Transport Links
The site is excellently located, lying immediately adjacent to Langley Rail Station which will shortly be served by Crossrail. Local bus services are also available along the Station Road, there will be ample opportunity for future employees and visitors to travel to the site with ease using sustainable transport modes.

Hours of Operation
Although it is proposed that the Data Centre would be permitted to operate on a 24-hour basis, the only vehicle movements occurring at night would be cars associated with members of staff changing shifts. The proposed use of the site will reduce vehicle movements overall as well as reducing the number of HGVs.

Access Points to Site
Currently, the site operates a one-way in and one-way out access arrangement onto Station Road. It is proposed to provide a simple priority junction into and out of the site.