M-SParc (Menai Science Park), a wholly owned subsidiary of Bangor University, aims to drive growth in knowledge based science, with an early focus on low carbon energy, the environment and ICT sectors.
Willmott Dixon is teaming up with FaulknerBrown architects and Pwllheli-based Trawscoed Studio, which is creating a 3D visualisation of the first phase. Work starts later this year with completion scheduled for early 2018.
Phase one will consist of a 5,000 sq m three-storey building, which will be constructed to BREEAM Excellent standards, and will comprise offices, laboratory and workshop space for up to 700 people. It will form the hub for the entire Parc and become an important regional centre for a range of businesses from SMEs to large corporations.
The eight-hectare site will also be sympathetically landscaped within a parkland setting, with the first phase housing start-ups, accelerator and mature projects, as well as an open innovation area.
The project came about after Bangor University secured £10.8m of funding from the Welsh Government and £10.2m of European Regional Development funding.
The contract win expands Willmott Dixon's science and technology portfolio. The contractor recently built the world’s leading satellite testing facility at Harwell Science Campus in Oxfordshire and is about to hand over a new home for the Met office’s supercomputer in Exeter.
Anthony Dillon, managing director of Willmott Dixon in the North, said: “The science and technology industry is an important sector for the UK and we are excited about providing cutting-edge facilities for leading businesses and research in North Wales. This will also create many new jobs in the area as companies seek employees for work such as laboratory assistants, researchers, engineers, business development officers and technicians, which will be the start of some wonderful careers for people in the area.”
Ieuan Wyn Jones, executive director of the park said: “The science park will create a bridge between innovative companies and Bangor University. We are already in advanced discussions with a number of potential tenants from a range of sectors. This project ties in with many on-going economic strategies and comes at an opportune time to link with other on-going projects in the region.”