LEP-funded building works kick start at 3M BIC
A Kirklees-based building contractor has won a tender to implement significant changes to the 3M Buckley Innovation Centre (3M BIC), as part of the Huddersfield Innovation and Incubation Project (HIIP) funded through the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership.
A Kirklees-based building contractor has won a tender to implement significant changes to the 3M Buckley Innovation Centre (3M BIC), as part of the Huddersfield Innovation and Incubation Project (HIIP).
HIIP has been funded through a £2.9m grant from the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Growth Deal - a £1bn package of government investment to accelerate growth and create jobs across Leeds City Region. It will see significant investment in equipment and facilities at the 3M BIC based on Firth Street.
Illingworth and Gregory Ltd (I&G), based in Milnsbridge, Huddersfield, has secured the work following a tough procurement process, which saw 11 companies bid for the tender. They will work alongside Rider Levett Bucknall (RLB) that are providing architectural services. Work will commence at the beginning of February and will include adjustments to internal and external doors to accommodate large equipment, fittings for gas and water in numerous rooms, and building internal walls.
Through the HIIP, businesses will have access to state-of-the-art technology at the 3M BIC to aid growth. Facilities will include:
- Self-serve digital "space" equipped with a range of 3D printers
- Virtual reality
- 4K videography
- Fully supported metal additive manufacturing (AM) centre of excellence
- Imaging suite equipped with optical, laser and electron microscopy equipment
- Metrology grade X-Ray CT
- Visualisation suite for product design, animation, and business data analytics
- High Performance Computing
- Fully-equipped software training suite.
Roger Marsh OBE, Chair of the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP), said: "This is an exciting time for the team at the Huddersfield Innovation and Incubation Project as well as local businesses and entrepreneurs who will have access to world-class, industry leading facilities within months.
"Leeds City Region has a growing reputation for innovation and invention, and Kirklees companies, particularly those in the precision engineering, manufacturing and digital sectors, are playing a significant role in driving innovation-led growth. Services such as these - alongside the LEP's own Access Innovation programme that provides funding and support for businesses who want to develop new products and process - will ensure this reputation strengthens even further in the years to come."
Cllr David Sheard, West Yorkshire Combined Authority member and Leader of Kirklees Council, said: "By giving local businesses access to the tools and technology they need to modernise, invent and transform, the Huddersfield Innovation and Incubation Project (HIIP) is helping to boost our local economy and increase our innovation capacity. Local Growth Deal funding is supporting Kirklees companies to compete on the national and international stage for digital, design and smart manufacturing as well as create jobs and grow the economy for the long-term."
Michael Wilson, Centre Manager and HIIP Director at the 3M BIC, said: "Significant modifications to the centre have to be made to house the new facilities we are investing in as part of the HIIP. Some of the technology is quite big or require temperature-controlled environments and gas and water supplies, so we're having to widen doors and build specific internal spaces to accommodate them. It's all hands-on deck to get the work complete before Spring."