Planning application for world-leading science centre at West Longbridge

St. Modwen, the UK’s leading developer of new communities and high-quality homes, has made a planning application to Birmingham City Council to build a new industry-leading scientific precision engineering centre that will create up to 100 skilled new jobs.

Planning permission for one of the buildings at the centre is being sought on behalf of Waters Corporation, global leaders in analytical instruments and software for over 60 years and employing more than 7,800 employees throughout the world. The new facility to be based on West Longbridge Business Park would provide a world-class centre developing high-value analytical technologies and offering industry-leading scientific expertise. The 45,000 sq ft proposed development would deliver a 300% increase in available space for Waters compared to their existing premises in Solihull allowing for increased precision manufacturing capacity and capabilities.

The Waters facility represents yet another scientific business addition following the recent confirmation that IVC Evidensia is developing a state-of-the-art veterinary centre at the site as it becomes a leading location for science and technology, medicine, precision engineering and R&D.

West Longbridge Business Park will create up to 5,000 new jobs, with work on access roads and landscaping already underway following £20m of infrastructure investment in partnership with the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA).

Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “This latest planning application for the ongoing regeneration of Longbridge maintains the momentum of this exciting project that is delivering opportunities locally, regionally and nationally. It’s pleasing that the WMCA have been able to contribute to the ongoing development that is positively impacting Longbridge today and creating a legacy for future generations.”

West Longbridge Business Park offers unbeatable local, regional and national connectivity and is a sustainable addition to the wider £1bn Longbridge masterplan. In addition to the business park, the investment will see an attractive new residential neighbourhood of 350 homes also created, permissions of which were granted in February 2022.

Elliot Sellars, Development Director at St. Modwen, said: “The proposed new facility for Waters would deliver further expertise in this specialist area that is developing here at Longbridge. It’s encouraging that globally recognised scientific organisations are seeing the potential that West Longbridge has to offer in terms of attracting talented staff and the benefits of the location geographically.”

“Interest in opportunities at Longbridge are gaining momentum from businesses here in the West Midlands and also throughout the world which bodes well for the future.”
Adrian Capes, Site Director at Waters adds: “We are really excited to progress with this application that represents a significant investment for our business. After carefully considering a range of options throughout the West Midlands, we felt that Longbridge provided the perfect environment to meet our immediate business objectives as well as those for the next decade and beyond. We are very much looking forward to a long-term future for Waters at Longbridge.”