Construction is underway on the latest innovation centre being built at Keele University’s Science and Innovation Park.
Innovation Centre 7 (IC7) – which will be the home of Keele’s new Digital Society Institute – is set to open in 2022.
It will focus on date and digital technology and help companies in the business, health, and cultural sectors to innovate and expand in a competitive and dynamic business environment.
There will be 13,000 sq ft of space available to let for businesses of all sizes.
The building is being constructed by Bowmer and Kirkland and will be powered by renewable energy generated from the on-site solar farm and wind turbines being constructed in partnership with ENGIE as part of Keele’s SEND project.
Professor Trevor McMillan, vice chancellor of Keele University, said: “I’m delighted that construction has begun on our new innovation centre, which will have a hugely beneficial impact for businesses in the region when it opens next year.
“Like our Smart Innovation Hub, the focus on collaboration and making our world-leading expertise available for the benefit of local SMEs will be invaluable in helping local companies to innovate, while the focus on digital technology and big data will give them an edge in an unpredictable and dynamic business environment as the region recovers from Covid-19.”
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Alun Rogers, chair of the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (SSLEP), said: “SMEs are the lifeblood of our region’s economy. Now, more than ever, every SME needs a grasp of how data can be used to drive insight and create new business models helping them find competitive advantage in such a changing world.
“We’re delighted to have contributed over £6.1m to this project from the £23.7m that the SSLEP secured from the government’s Getting Building Fund – it’s a key project that will drive economic growth, create new jobs and support sustainable growth across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent as we all work towards net zero.”