LIVERPOOL CITY REGION’S ‘HEATH PARK ’ DEVELOPMENT SEEKS ETHICAL INVESTORS
The owner and operator of The Heath, a 57-acre business park in Runcorn, is seeking funding to realise its vision to create a “modern-day version of Port Sunlight” in Runcorn.
The proposed scheme from SOG Group, described as a “futuristic, multi-use and net carbon-free environment” would provide 19 acres of employment space and 27 acres of mixed uses, including residential, along with a seven-acre retirement zone, targeted to complete in 2050.
The park currently houses around 120 businesses and 2,000 employees, but the proposed expansion could see the creation of up to 10,000 jobs in total and residential accommodation for up to 2,000 people, according to the project’s surveyor Rider Levett Bucknall. John Lewis, SOG managing director, said:
“Our vision is to see our location transformed into ‘Heath Park’ which will set the standards for how we should be living and working in decades to come.
“I want to see ‘Heath Park’ become a world-leading model of environmental and social excellence which can be replicated elsewhere. I believe ‘Heath Park’ can become a modern-day version of Port Sunlight, the early Victorian example of social and environmental community, created by Lever Brothers for workers from their soap manufacturing plant in North West England.
“The Heath Business and Technical Park has been a very successful regeneration project. Over the past 20 years we have taken an ailing industrial site and regenerated it into a thriving business and science centre, and a crucial community asset for Runcorn.
“We are an important employment centre supporting around 2,000 jobs. With the regeneration of The Heath complete, we are perfectly positioned to look to the future and see this location evolve into our ‘Heath Park’ vision, a truly state-of-the-art business, residential and community environment which not only meets the challenges of the future but is a pathfinder for others to follow.”
“The existing business accommodation at our thriving park is to be increased by way of more efficiently designed buildings on a revised smaller footprint that make way for new mixed-use development.
“The process of relocating the existing businesses onsite and site clearance has already commenced as we pave the way to ensure this attractive and unique investment opportunity is shovel ready, once we secure a deal with the ethical investors.”
“SOG is wholly owned by me. I am a committee of one and I want to see the site transformed by the very best, with funding raised from the very best, who l want to embrace our dynamic vision. We will seek those [partners] with a desire to create something very special.”
Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor for Liverpool City Region, said:
“SOG’s vision of transforming The Heath Business and Technical Park into ‘Heath Park’ – a state-of-the-art, sustainable environment in which to live and work – is precisely the kind of inspirational project that aligns with our vision of a growing, dynamic and prosperous Liverpool City Region.
“This beacon project complements Liverpool City Region’s Local Industrial Strategy while SOG’s intention to target ethical investors for this excellent initiative perfectly aligns with our innovative model of truly inclusive economic growth.
For more information on Liverpool City Region’s Heath Park Vision visit heathpark-uk.com