£14m Grant For New Birmingham Life Sciences Campus

Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) has granted £14 million of funding to support the construction of  Birmingham Health Innovation Campus, a £210 million life sciences campus in Selly Oak.

Insider Media reports the project, previously known as Birmingham Life Sciences Park, is being led by the University of Birmingham and commercial property firm Bruntwood SciTech, who announced the partnership back in October.

The scheme will consist of 657,000 sq ft of lab, office and incubation space which will provide co-location opportunities for all stages of health and life science businesses. It is expected to attract significant investment and accelerate the development and deployment of new drugs, diagnostics and healthcare technologies to patients.

In 2017, the university agreed on a deal for ten acres of land off the Battery Park site in Selly Oak where a new retail park opened two years ago.

Phase one will have a seven-storey, 133,000 sq ft building which will offer lab and office space to companies specialising in medtech, precision medicine and digital healthcare.

The new building will be home to a brand new innovation centre called Precision Health Technologies Accelerator, which is the main focus of the investment from GNSLEP.

The scheme aims to attract and support businesses from start-ups and SMEs to established enterprises to the city, with the GBSLEP cash supporting the design and fit-out of the facilities such as incubation suites, labs, offices and training facilities.

Precision Health Technologies Accelerator will also be home to Birmingham Precision Medicine Centre, bringing together leading diagnostic and clinical trials capabilities which aim to support the development of new diagnostics and therapeutics.

When construction begins in 2021, it is expected to create approximately 500 new jobs, and a further 500 new roles will become available in life sciences and support jobs once phase one of the building is completed in 2023.

In total, it has been estimated that the new campus will support up to 10,000 new jobs for the local economy, as well as contributing £400 million GVA (Gross Value Added) by 2030.

GBSLEP chairman Tim Pile said: “The accelerator has enormous potential to drive healthcare innovation and the development of new health technologies which represent a huge growth opportunity for our region. This has obviously been brought into even sharper focus this year with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

He added that investment in sites such as the Birmingham Health Innovation Campus is essential for achieving the economic growth needed for a sustainable recovery, as well as fostering cross-sectorial collaboration.

University of Birmingham vice-principal Tim Jones said: “The campus is a catalyst for the region’s health and life sciences industry and a growing, vibrant cluster.

“GBSLEP’s support and investment will be instrumental in enabling us to develop the core accelerator infrastructure which will facilitate the two specialist centres of excellence within.”

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