Lord Sainsbury unveils science park masterplan
Press release issued: 30 April 2008
SPark, the new £300 million science park for Bristol and Bath, was launched on April 29 with Lord Sainsbury, the UK's leading expert on Science and Innovation, unveiling a model and images of how the first building, SPark One, will look.
The announcement came as part of a one-day conference celebrating Science City Bristol and all that the city-region has done and continues to do in the world of science and technology.
More than 120 business, university and public-sector leaders attended the event at HP Labs, Filton, to hear speeches from Lord Sainsbury, Hermann Hauser, co-founder of Amadeus Capital Partners and architect of the Cambridge Phenomenon, and Johnny Ball, science enthusiast and former TV presenter.
Professor Eric Thomas, Chair of Science City Bristol and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bristol, chaired the conference. They discussed technology solutions to major issues facing Bristol and the surrounding area: sustainable transportation, skills shortages in the workforce and public-private collaboration across sectors.
Lord Sainsbury said: "The Bristol city-region is known for its scientific heritage, including its links with Brunel, but the continuing impact of this scientific culture is often underestimated. Its scientists remain at the global leading edge of technological developments in areas such as mobile telephony, robotics and low-power micro-electronic devices. With such significant research and development work under way today in its universities and businesses, this announcement highlights the importance of making sure that this world-leading talent gets all the support it needs to continue to bring world-beating science to market."
Professor Thomas said: "The Bristol region has three major universities, is an international leader in aerospace, semi-conductor design and the creative industries, and has one of the most dynamic start-up sectors in the country. SPark can help drive further innovation and I am very proud that the University of Bristol is playing a leading role in this development."
SPark is a ground-breaking development driven by the South West Regional Development Agency, the universities of Bristol, Bath and the West of England and specialist developer Quantum Property Partnership. The ten-year project will provide dedicated space for science and technology businesses in South West England and create around 6,000 highly skilled jobs. Contractors for Spark One will be announced this summer, with work expected to start before the end of the year.