Fareham leader plans to bring second innovation centre to Daedalus
PLANS for a second innovation centre at Daedalus have been unveiled just after the original building celebrated its first anniversary.
Councillor Sean Woodward, Fareham Borough Council’s executive leader has spoken about the plan for a new building to complement the Fareham Innovation Centre, which opened to the public last April.
It was revealed last Tuesday that the £5.3m existing centre is full, with 27 businesses now working from the site.
Not resting on the laurels of the achievement, Cllr Woodward is now looking to expand on its success with another centre.
He said: ‘The first centre is now full and has been a fantastic success.
‘We are now looking to build on that with another innovation centre.
‘Daedalus is the council’s second biggest project after Welborne and this is the next step in creating a unique business hub there.
‘We have completed phase one of our plans and now we’re planning phase two.’
Cllr Woodward said that there are no concrete designs or date set in stone for the new development as of yet. However, he added that it was likely to be of a similar cost to the first centre and be aimed at bringing in more businesses from the engineering, aerospace, aviation and marine industries.
The centre is next to the former military Daedalus airport at Lee-on-the-Solent within the 82-hectare Solent Enterprise Zone.
Graham Burgess, councillor for Lee-on-the-Solent East at Gosport Borough Council was in favour of the new development.
He said: ‘I’m all for bringing in more creative businesses and more jobs at Daedalus.
‘I would welcome anything that would help expand on the site’s current success and bring in more jobs which is what we want.’
Oxford Innovation operates the site on behalf of Fareham Borough Council.
A total of 110 businessmen and women work at the site.
There are a total of 24 offices and 15 workshops at the current centre for businesses to use.
The centre was recently awarded the Most Innovative Small Business Friendly, Programme, or Project at the Federation of Small Businesses 2015 awards.