First building approved for Northampton Enterprise Zone
The first building proposed for Northampton’s Enterprise Zone has been given the go-ahead.
The 3,740 sq m Innovation Centre was approved by West Northamptonshire Development Corporation’s planning committee.
Located opposite Castle Railway Station, the Innovation Centre will be a modern and environmentally friendly building, reaching six stories high. It will provide office accommodation and support services for up to 60 small businesses in Northampton town centre.
The scheme is part of a planned waterside development, which will include new homes, offices, shops and community facilities on disused land alongside the River Nene. It will be constructed on the site of the former United Social Club – a derelict building which WNDC acquired and demolished last year.
Adrian Arnold, WNDC’s Director of Planning Services said: “Along with plans for the wider area, the Innovation Centre will form an impressive gateway into the centre of Northampton. It will provide much-needed modern office space in the heart of the town, attracting vital new businesses, jobs and investment”
The development is being led by WNDC, which is part-funding the project and securing additional investment from a number of other sources. The Corporation is currently in discussions with potential partners to help develop the building and operate the centre once it is completed.
It is the third innovation centre that WNDC has helped to fund and deliver, following the expansion of the University of Northampton’s Portfolio Innovation Centre in 2009 and Daventry’s award winning iCon Innovation Centre last year.
Once funding and development partners are secured, it is envisaged that construction could start later this year and complete in early 2014.