Newcastle Helix in for life sciences boost as £25m lab facility nears completion

A new lab facility is launching at the £350m Newcastle Helix scheme.

The centre, to be called The Biosphere, will serve as a home for ambitious life sciences businesses.

Spanning 90,000 sq ft, the £25m facility will contain commercial laboratory and office spaces, in addition to a conferencing and events area for up to 80 people.

Newcastle City Council is delivering the project with a team that includes building firm Kier, Ryder Architects and science park consultancy Cam-Sci.

Invest Newcastle will work with London creative agency Bandstand to attract new life sciences businesses to The Biosphere, which will be managed by building consultancy Aura North East.

Significant funding for The Biosphere came through the current European Regional Development Fund and North East Local Growth Fund programmes.

The city council’s Cabinet Member for Employment, Cllr Ged Bell, said: “The Biosphere will be a welcome addition to Newcastle Helix’s property portfolio and provide much needed laboratory space in the city.

“It will play a vital role in the economic development of our city and help us to build on our reputation for life sciences; enabling this sector to grow.”

He continued: “Newcastle is at the forefront of science and innovation and what makes The Biosphere unique is that businesses will have the opportunity to connect with researchers, academics and industry leaders.

“This will help them to innovate and create a pipeline of talent that will take them forward into the future.”

Catherine Walker, inward investment director at Invest Newcastle, commented: “This is such an exciting time for the life sciences sector.

“The Biosphere has already proven popular, not only because of its technical specification, but because of the community that surrounds its base.”

She added: “We are delighted to be part of the strategic team that is helping to drive this project forward.”

The Biosphere is due to complete in late November.

Newcastle Helix represents a partnership between Newcastle City Council, Newcastle University and Legal & General to create over 4,000 jobs, 500,000 sq ft of office space and 450 homes.

 

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