GREEN LIGHT FOR NEW LIFE SCIENCES DISTRICT FOR OXFORD
Oxford City Council has granted planning permission for Oxford North, proposed by Thomas White Oxford (TWO) (the development company of St John’s College), to create a new life sciences district for Oxford. The scheme will include new laboratories and workspaces for biomedical science, new homes, public parks and shops, to retain and attract global science research talent and help boost the local and national economy.
G&T is providing Cost and Project Management services on the Fletcher Priest designed 64-acre masterplan which will provide 4,500 new jobs across circa 936,500 sq ft of laboratories and offices, 480 new homes (of which 35% - or 168 - will be affordable), small shops, hotel, restaurants and bars. The scheme will also provide circa 23 acres of open spaces including three new parks, as well as significant investment into the walking, cycling and bus highway networks.
"It will be a place for tomorrow's workforce improving people's lives, air quality and the environment while delivering a significant boost to the economy."
Professor Andrew Parker
St John's College
A detailed consent has been granted for the first phase of the development in the Central area, which will provide 140,000 sq ft of laboratories and office space in three buildings along with the first phase of a new public park:
- The Red Hall will be a dynamic workspace for start-ups, entrepreneurs and freelancers, attracting spin-outs from Oxford University and Oxford Brookes University, with capacity for around 300 people to work collaboratively.
- Two connected laboratory and workspace buildings totalling 55,000 sq ft each over four floors, which will provide life sciences businesses from SMEs to incubate and grow, up to global organisations looking to thrive within Oxford’s commercial ecosystem to develop ideas, collaborate and innovate.
A reserved matters application for the initial enabling works, which will include the earthworks and drainage, will be submitted shortly to Oxford City Council.
Professor Andrew Parker, St John’s College said, “Oxford North will connect and enhance the local area physically through open spaces, public art and culture, and immersive experiences. It will be a place for tomorrow’s workforce improving people’s lives, air quality and the environment while delivering a significant boost to the economy. We are proud to be investing in such a project for Oxford.”
William Donger, director, TWO added, “This is a significant day for Oxford’s future after many years of discussion to unlock a bold vision to transform the area to build a global innovation district for the city. We are committed to investing in a place that will enhance people’s quality of life, help to retain and attract Oxford’s remarkable talent and deliver positive socio-economic impacts.”
Works are already underway by Oxfordshire County Council for the wider A40 improvements which will see the transformation of the road into a tree-lined street with new bus stops, extended bus and cycle lanes, wider footpaths and safer crossing points.