Work is underway on the exciting £62M expansion of one of the UK’s premier science parks.

Led by Business Durham and funded by Durham County Council, the development of Phase 3 of the North East Technology Park (NETPark) at Sedgefield has begun, after Kier Construction was chosen to deliver the project.

NETPark Phase 3 offers a unique opportunity for high-growth science, engineering and technology companies to grow, scale up and commercialise operations.

Located in the heart of County Durham, NETPark is one of the UK’s premier science parks for the commercialisation of cutting-edge research and development from major international organisations, universities and entrepreneurs.

Phase 3 offers existing NETPark tenants the space for their continued growth in a familiar and flourishing environment while offering an attractive proposition to businesses considering relocation or expansion into brand-new state-of-the-art facilities.

NETPark Phase 3 will create 232,150 sq ft of new laboratory, office and production space, integrating features that are most important to science and technology businesses, including:

Flexibility – adaptable buildings that can be modified for a variety of uses

Collaborative community – designed to facilitate a collaborative culture, including meeting spaces, socialising areas and opportunities to network

Access to expertise – home to 3 National Catapult Centres, Durham Universities Centre for Advanced Instrumentation and Centre for Process Innovation (CPI).

Business Support – access to support from Business Durham’s highly experienced Business Support Officers

Parking – parking facilities, EV charging outlets, cycle storage

Wellbeing – attractive walking and cycle routes, breakout areas and rest points.

Janet Todd, Project Director at NETPark, who will steer the way through Phase 3 said “It is a fantastic project that is both exciting and challenging. NETPark is a uniquely collaborative community of businesses that complement each other, have open access to on-site expertise and work closely together. We are keen to keep the campus feel and maintain the collaborative ethos of NETPark. We are already home to over 40 companies employing around 700 people, this new development has the potential to add a further 1,250 skilled jobs.

“NETPark has been fully occupied for three years and the expansion of Phase 3 is the perfect opportunity to accommodate the many companies that want to grow. The larger units in Phase 3 – up to 35,000 sq ft – will allow that to happen while freeing smaller laboratory and office space elsewhere.”

Alongside the council’s investment, the North East LEP is providing funding to enable sustainability and low-carbon measures in Phase 3.

Opening in 2004, NETPark has achieved great success and is now home to many innovative companies, including significant private sector employers such as:

Kromek – Collaborating with government agencies in the UK and USA on the early detection of biological threats.

High Force Research – An independent R&D Company specialising in Chemical Synthesis and Chemical Process Development.

Northumbria Pharma – A pharmaceutical company specialising in the research, development, manufacture, licensing and marketing of unique and vital pharmaceutical products.

Magnitude BioScience – A specialist Contract Research Organization (CRO) aiding industry and academia in advancing research projects through expert scientists, C. elegans services, and unique automated imaging technology.

PolyPhotonix – A biophotonic research company developing healthcare solutions in therapeutics, diagnostics and imaging, using photonics as an enabling solution.

IBEX Innovations – X-ray technology detection company developing and commercialising detector technology capable of generating high sensitivity materials information from standard X-ray detectors.

Redditch Medical – providing medical devices and specialised pharmaceutical products to a global healthcare customer base.

NETPark employs more than 700 people in specialist sectors, including advanced materials and manufacturing, nanotechnology, X-ray technology, semiconductors, defence, electronics, photonics, robotics, pharmaceuticals, and space/satellites.

Phase 3 is expected to be complete by early 2025.

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