A flagship County Durham technology park is set to expand significantly following a £50m investment by Durham County Council, which will create over 1,200 jobs.
Plans to expand the North East Technology Park (NETPark) in Sedgefield have been given the go ahead by the council’s cabinet, which has agreed to £49.6m to finance the first phase of the expansion providing up to 270,000 sq ft of new laboratory, office, production and storage space.
Since opening in 2004, NETPark has become a collaborative community of growing science, engineering and technology businesses and is home to over 40 companies and 600 people employed on-site, delivering high value jobs in County Durham.
NETPark is managed by Business Durham, the business support service of Durham County Council, and it will also oversee the new development.
The initial phase of NETPark Phase Three is part of larger expansion plans to the park, which include a Masterplan for up to 433,800 sq ft across a 26-acre site.
The new development will offer design and build opportunities from 5,000 – 80,000 sq ft as well as speculative units of various sizes.
Cllr James Rowlandson, cabinet member for resources, investment and assets at Durham County Council, said: “It’s exciting to see NETPark’s Phase Three expansion going ahead.
“This investment reaffirms the Council’s original vision for NETPark and our commitment to the ongoing creation of a world class centre for businesses developing the next generation of advanced technologies.
“The plans to expand NETPark demonstrate the importance of NETPark to the region’s economy, not only is it the go to place for people and companies with great ideas and ambition, but it plays a key role in creating more and better jobs for our workforce.
“The expansion will create 1,250 direct jobs and a further 2,200 in the supply chain in thriving industries which will help deliver a strong and competitive economy.”
With demand for specialist facilities on-site increasing, NETPark Phase 3 will enable more high growth science, engineering and technology companies to design and build bespoke premises to grow, scale-up and commercialise their operations at the science park.