Chancellor launches £25m Citylabs

CHANCELLOR George Osborne has launched Citylabs, Manchester Science Parks’ £25m redevelopment of the grade II-listed former Manchester Royal Eye Hospital.
The 100,000 sq ft centre will provide facilities to businesses operating in the life sciences sector.

It already has pre-lets signed with the Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, The Manchester College, NHS spin-out TRUSTECH and Icon Developments.

The project has been part funded by the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund), with senior debt provided by Lloyds Bank and the North West Evergreen Fund. Around 300 people are expected to work there and it is estimated it will boost Manchester’s economy by £57m.

At today’s launch MSP also announced it is changing its name to Manchester Science Partnerships.

The Chancellor said: “Citylabs is a fantastic initiative and I am delighted to be able to launch this exciting project. This is an excellent example of partnership between academics, clinicians and industry driving innovation and investment in health sciences. Scientific research and development is at the heart of building the Northern Powerhouse and it is initiatives like this that will help drive a resilient recovery and create sustainable economic growth.”

Chris Oglesby, Chairman of MSP, said: “Citylabs is the embodiment of the partnerships that drive investment and innovation in this city. It is only by working with partners in the NHS and industry that the right environment for investment, growth and discovery in science can be fostered. Today we are celebrating more than just a building. We are celebrating the idea that through partnership, great innovation can be achieved.

“That is why we have changed ‘Park’ to ‘Partnerships’ in our name. This organisation is about more than the bricks and mortar of its buildings, it is about working with partners to deliver the right conditions for world-leading innovation that can drive forward the national and international health agenda.”