Work to start on £11.5m Norwich Research Park building

23 January 2013

Norwich Research Park, one of Europe’s leading centre of research in Food, Health and the Environment, has awarded a £11.5m design and build contract for a new landmark building and associated infrastructure works to Morgan Sindall.

The new building, to be known as the Centrum, will provide approximately 4,000 square metres of commercial accommodation including office, laboratory, business and social space in a new multi-storey building. The additional works will deliver improvements to the car parks, lighting, road junctions and IT infrastructure.

The total package, known as Project 26, will pave the way for developing a thriving research and innovation campus over the next decade and beyond by supporting spin-out and start-up companies and through attracting inward investment from large corporate organisations involved in science and technology.

Morgan Sindall was awarded the contract after a competitive tender. The contract could see up to 80 jobs at the height of the build programme. Work is expected to start on site in late January 2013 with the building opening planned for May 2014.

Alan Giles, Project Director - Norwich Research Park said “We are pleased to award Morgan Sindall this contract after a rigorous OJEU tender process. This is an important milestone in the development of the Research Park and the Centrum will be the focal point for business and research to come together.

“Centrum will provide additional commercial laboratory and office accommodation for more established companies wishing to locate to Norwich Research Park and for companies already on the Park, it will provide them with the grow-on space in which to further expand their business.”

Gavin Napper, area director for Morgan Sindall, said: “We’re delighted to have been appointed to this landmark project. The Centrum building is a key aspect of the wider development of the Norwich Research Park and we are looking forward to being a part of the exciting and ambitious development plan.

“Morgan Sindall is well versed in constructing specialist research facilities and we are looking forward to bringing this knowledge to bear on the Centrum project. The new building will provide commercial researchers with high-quality facilities, while also providing contemporary office and social space, which will help to facilitate engagement between the science and business communities.”

The development forms a key part of ‘Project 26′, which refers to the £26m funding awarded through the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) in the 2011 Government Budget. The funding has been awarded to Norwich Research Park to improve the Park’s IT infrastructure, road network and provide new flagship buildings.

The Centrum development will be located centrally on the Norwich Research Park adjacent to the existing Recreation Centre and Conference Centre on the John Innes Centre site. It will provide a hub for the local science and business community, and will also facilitate collaboration amongst the Research Park’s occupants.

The Norwich Research Park is a partnership between the University of East Anglia, the Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital, and four independent research centres: the John Innes Centre, the Institute of Food Research, the Sainsbury Laboratory and the Genome Analysis Centre.

The Park has one of Europe's largest single-site concentrations of research in agri-food, health and environmental sciences.