Plans for a new £20 million laboratory facility on Newcastle Science Central have been approved today (Friday 29 July) which will help boost growth and create hundreds of jobs.
Newcastle Laboratory will provide over 70,000 sq ft of specialist facilities for the flourishing life sciences and healthcare sector in the region, offering high quality, incubation and grow-on space to meet the needs of innovative businesses in this sector.
A unique eco-system of associated services will also be provided through a bespoke business acceleration service, including ready access to expert advice and industry knowledge to help tenants innovate and grow, and to use insight-led research to support the commercialisation of products and services.
The state-of-the-art building has been developed by a design team led by Aura alongside award-winning architects Ryder, who have been supported by leading industry specialists including CAM-SCI, to ensure the building meets the needs of the healthcare and life sciences sector.
Nick Forbes, Leader of Newcastle City Council said: “Newcastle Laboratory will provide much needed specialist facilities to support pioneering research and significant expertise happening here already, building on Newcastle’s global reputation for research excellence in life sciences.
“Science Central is already home to three national research centres – testament to Newcastle’s world-class strengths in the science and health sector, and this new facility will help accelerate the pace of growth in this sector, and create the next generation of highly skilled jobs in the region.”
Kirsty Thirlwell, CEO from Aura North East said: “Aura are delighted to have been given this opportunity to support Newcastle City Council with this ambitious and exciting project. Our business was set up to support the development of the North East. We are proud to be part of the team bringing life science’s jobs to the centre of Newcastle and increasing the capacity for biosciences in the region.”
Richard Wise, Partner at Ryder Architecture said: “This planning approval is a testament to a lot of hard work from the whole design and client team. It is a significant step towards the delivery of this high quality, timeless piece of architecture which will provide bespoke laboratory space responding to the regional growth in life sciences, supporting the wider aspirations of Newcastle Science Central.”
Emma Banks, CEO of Datatrial has been working on the life sciences strategy with the North East LEP, said: “Newcastle and the North East already has a vibrant and internationally recognised healthcare and life sciences industry. With the addition of laboratory space and associated business support services at Newcastle Science Central, we have an opportunity to better meet the needs of our already growing sector, attract more investment to the region, support new businesses as they grow and create new and exciting employment prospects.”
It is anticipated that building work will start on site in early 2017, and the facility is expected to be up and running by spring 2018.
Newcastle Laboratory is being funded by Newcastle City Council, the North East LEP as part of the North East Growth Deal (Local Growth Fund) from Government, and also decision is expected on funding from European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.