The £90million Airport Business Park Southend has passed a major milestone with the completion of construction of the infrastructure and enabling works at the 21-ha scheme.
Since construction work began in 2016, works at the site have created 282 new jobs across the enabling works package.
The scheme is part of an ambitious new vision for Southend and is being delivered in a joint venture partnership between property developer, HBD, and Southend-on-Sea Borough Council.
The South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP) has contributed more than £23million in phased funding. This has enabled the construction of the roads and services and will part-fund the construction of the Launchpad, the first dedicated facility at the site to champion innovation for start-ups and SMEs. It will comprise a mixture of office space, workshops, research facilities and breakout spaces, along with a café and seminar space. The Launchpad site has been prepared and construction of the building is due to start on site in March 2021 and will be delivered by Southend-on-Sea Borough Council.
HBD has secured outline planning permission for 1 million sq. ft. of flexible business space, including large-scale industrial and warehousing space, hotel facilities and appropriate A3 occupiers.
In July, Airport Business Park Southend welcomed its first commercial occupier, with IPECO Holdings taking possession of its 124, 000 sq. ft. purpose built base.
Harry Bunbury, Director at HBD’s London office, said: “Airport Business Park Southend is an important scheme for both the local area and the wider region, supporting a thriving economy and creating valuable, skilled jobs. Work is continuing to progress quickly on site, and we look forward to submitting planning for further aspects of the scheme in the coming weeks.”
Cllr Kevin Robinson, cabinet member for business, culture and tourism for Southend-on-Sea Borough Council, said: “I am delighted to see the project progressing at such a rapid pace. The Airport Business Park will play a key role in the recovery from the Coronavirus pandemic and the completion of the enabling works means that serviced plots are now available for development and for new and existing businesses to grow, providing thousands of new jobs in the town.”
Located adjacent to London Southend Airport and close to major road and rail networks, the business park benefits from unrivalled connectivity. The Council’s “Gigabit City” initiative will also allow occupiers to benefit from superfast network speeds.
With the enabling works complete, HBD can deliver bespoke buildings up to 52,500 sq. ft. within a 12-15-month timeframe.