University of Glasgow gets £1m cash boost for new waterfront campus
The University of Glasgow’s plan to build its new innovation campus along the bustling River Clyde in Govan is now on track with the local council approving £1 million in funding for the project.
The funding will come from the £113.9 million allocated under the £1.13 billion Glasgow City Region City Deal fund to regenerate vacant and derelict sites in the Clyde Waterfront and West End Innovation Quarter. The area is home to fantastic assets such as the New South Glasgow Hospitals Campus, Glasgow University, Pacific Quay and the West End itself, but has suffered from the decline of industry.
The university’s new campus, which project leaders have dubbed the “Silicon Valley on the Clyde” will be a key feature of the Clyde Waterfront Innovation Quarter, creating over 450 new jobs and stimulating economic growth in the Life Science and Further Education sectors, among other high-value industries down the supply chain.
According to reports, council regeneration projects aim to turn the area into an attractive urban quarter capable of driving up private sector investment to Glasgow and unlock the economic potential of previously derelict sites close to the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital. It is expected that by the end of the City Deal investment in the quarter, more than 4,000 jobs would have been created, as well as 184,000 square metres of commercial floorspace.
“The Clyde Waterfront Innovation Quarter will bring thousands of jobs to communities on the banks of the river, and the Innovation Campus will help to unlock the enormous potential of these sites in Govan,” says Councillor Susan Aitken, leader of Glasgow City Council and chair of the Glasgow City Region City Deal Cabinet.
“The City Deal funding the council has now approved will help deliver a facility that will further enhance Glasgow’s reputation as a leading city in technology and innovation, attract investment, and deliver inclusive economic growth,” she added.
Last month, the University of Glasgow unveiled plans for the Clyde Waterfront Innovation Campus (CWIC), a state-of-the-art research facility that aims to encourage and facilitate industry engagement and innovation, and spur the local economy.
The campus will act as a center of excellence where academics work alongside industry experts to develop a range of new technologies, creating high-end jobs for the Govan district, and further contributing to the Clyde waterfront urban renewal process.
The main pillars for the first stage of the development will be an enhanced James Watt Nanofabrication Centre (JWNC), and a Precision Medicine Living Laboratory.
The JWNC will focus on industries like nanofabrication for quantum technology and photonics, enabling the co-location of industrial R&D teams and academia with the support of state-of-the-art facilities. The plan has already received the support of 12 major industry partners and will also see the relocation of Europe’s leading clean room facility from the West End to Govan.
The Precision Medicine Living Laboratory, meanwhile, will strengthen Glasgow and Scotland’s existing position as the world leader in precision medicine, offering researchers a real-world clinical setting and a dedicated Health Innovation Hub that offers “grow on space”.
Derelict and vacant land in Govan have been earmarked for the campus, which will cost an estimated £80 million to build. The university has reportedly committed £28 million to the project, submitted a bid of £25 million for UK Government Strength in Places funding and secured in-principle funding support of £10 million from Glasgow City Region City Deal.
The £1 million grant approved last week will go towards supporting the cost of professional fees, technical studies, design and site investigation on the proposed spot for the campus.