Internet shopping giant Amazon is in talks over establishing a giant warehouse in Sheffield set to create 1,000 jobs, The Star understands.
The US firm is believed to be in discussions with Peel Logistics about talking up to half of a 48-acre plot off Shepcote Lane, beside Junction 34 of the M1 near Meadowhall.
Peel snapped up the former Outokumpu stainless steel processing site in May last year and hopes to obtain planning permission from Sheffield City Council for a business park early in 2018.
If the Amazon deal comes off it could establish a giant ‘fulfilment centre’ within two miles of Sheffield city centre, employing up to 1,000.
The fast-growing firm already employs more than 1,000 at four sites in Doncaster, including a £100m mega-shed at Verdion’s iPort off the M18 the size of 14 football pitches.
Neil Dickinson, chief operating officer at Peel Logistics, said they “did not comment on unconfirmed reports about occupier interest”.
He added: “We are in the home straight of the planning application process and most of the consultees have replied positively. We are looking forward to getting consent in the first quarter of this year.
“But we are not in a position to comment on prospective interest that may be rumoured in the market.”
Peel hopes to gain full planning permission for ‘Phase One’ to build two warehouses facing Shepcote Lane and outline permission to develop ‘Phase 2’ covering the rest of the site.
Some 15 companies had expressed an interest in Phase One and there was “huge pent-up demand,” Mr Dickinson added.
An Amazon spokesman said they would not confirm or deny reports about a possible move to the site.
The firm operates a ‘last mile’ distribution centre on Upwell Street in Brightside. It is a base for white vans which deliver items to homes.
The Outokumpu plot was once home to more than a dozen buildings where thousands of people processed stainless steel.
It was developed in the 1950s by the British Steel Corporation for the cold rolling and cutting of stainless steel into sheets of metal.
It became British Steel Stainless after privatisation in the 1980s.
In 1992 it was sold to Swedish company Avesta.
Avesta Sheffield became Avesta Polarit when Finnish firm Outokumpu bought a share and then simply Outokumpu in 2002 when it bought the lot.
The buildings were demolished and the site cleared in 2011. Outokumpu still runs a melt shop, bar company and sales and distribution company in Sheffield.