Whoa! Averaging 66,000 Unique Weekly Readers! 

Ballymena

Council furthers progress on planned Innovation and Inspiration Centre

2 Mins read

​“Significant progress” has been made by Mid and East Antrim Borough Council to further plans for a £26 million innovation centre as a key part of the regeneration of the former St Patrick’s Barracks site in Ballymena.

Through Belfast Region City Deal, the first phase of the innovation-led regeneration scheme will see the development of a next generation science park at the site. The proposed ‘Integrated Industrial Inspiration and Innovation Campus’, i4C, will be developed specifically to meet the needs of local businesses and potential entrepreneurs in target sectors such as advanced manufacturing and clean energy.

Speaking at a recent meeting of the Council’s City Deal Elected Members Working Group, Alderman Audrey Wales MBE, said: “The development of i4C will give our most rapidly growing business sectors such as advanced manufacturing access to cutting-edge technologies and expertise, supporting them to build capacity, fuel growth, bring new products and services to market and attract inward investment.

“In recent months our officers and elected members have made significant progress in developing a comprehensive Outline Business Case (OBC) for this £26 million investment in i4C, setting out a range of important considerations together with the wealth of potential benefits to be derived from the project.

“The submission of this OBC to the Treasury this summer is a significant step in the journey to realising the long-term boost that i4C will deliver to the local business community and wider economy in Mid and East Antrim.”

Councillor Timothy Gaston said: “We see this vital project as key to securing Mid and East Antrim’s future as a regional hub for innovation and advanced manufacturing.

“Our proposals include substantial investment at the former St Patrick’s Barracks site in Ballymena, with the innovation-driven regeneration of the key site to support economic growth and create jobs.

“The first phase of this project will involve the creation of an i4c digital innovation space and advanced manufacturing capabilities.”

Alderman Robin Cherry MBE said: “The i4C development will incorporate site enablement, digital innovation space and advanced manufacturing capabilities.

“The City Deal funded project will house a range of business incubation spaces, laboratory and maker space, digitally enabled Grade A office accommodation and a series of co-working and collaborative spaces hosting a number of innovation and enterprise programmes with a Northern Ireland-wide reach.”

The extension of the Gobbins cliff path and the regeneration of Carrickfergus are also proposed to receive funding alongside the regeneration of the former St Patrick’s Barracks site through the Belfast Region City Deal.

The deal sets out a vision to create 20,000 new and better-paid jobs across the region’s growth sectors; pushing the ‘fast-forward’ button on inclusive economic growth and ensuring opportunities are accessible across all of our communities. It will also improve infrastructure, digital connectivity, visitor attractions and innovation hubs; and deliver a major skills and employability programme.

For more information about the City Deal, visit: www.midandeastantrim.gov.uk/BRCityDeal

11054 posts

About author
An article that is attributed to the Causeway Coast Community Team has either involved multiple authors, written by a contributor or the main body of content is from a press release. Got a news-related tip you’d like to see covered on Causeway Coast Community? Email us - [email protected]
Articles
Related posts
Ballymena

Baby reflection garden started in Greenland Cemetery

2 Mins read
FacebookTwitterPinterestWhatsAppA new garden of reflection is being created in Greenland Cemetery, for parents who have suffered baby loss. The garden is a…
Ballymena

Mid & East Antrim Council takes action to tackle Covid spread and protect public finances

2 Mins read
FacebookTwitterPinterestWhatsAppMid and East Antrim Borough Council has announced changes to a number of its services as Northern Ireland enters into a four-week…
Ballymena

Leisure centres to close in Council move to protect health and ratepayers' money

2 Mins read
FacebookTwitterPinterestWhatsAppMid and East Antrim’s three leisure centres are to shut for a four-week period following the Northern Ireland Executive’s tightening of Covid-19…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *