Almost £40m in government funding has been awarded to support the development of a new facility for research into advanced propulsion systems, located at the Bristol and Bath Science Park.
The capital investment from the Higher Education Funding Council for England’s (HEFCE) UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (UKRPIF) will enable construction of the £60m Institute for Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems (IAAPS) to start in the summer of 2018.
The centre aims to lead the development of future generations of ultra-low emission vehicles and attract sector-related businesses to the region, generating economic growth. It will utilise the engineering expertise of the University of Bath.
IAAPS is expected to stimulate more than £67m in additional automotive research investment by 2025, creating additional turnover of £800m for the UK automotive sector and supporting about 1,900 new jobs. It is scheduled to open in early 2020.
The West of England Combined Authority and Local Enterprise Partnership will also provide support for the project, with the allocation of £10m through the region’s Growth Deal.
Commenting on the latest funding news, James Horner, Associate Architect for Stride Treglown, said:
“We’re extremely proud to have assisted the University of Bath in making the IAAPS project happen. The commitment of central government funding is testament to both the engineering expertise of the University and the continuing success of Bristol and Bath Science Park where we have previously constructed two phases of the National Composite Centre.
“Our initial feasibility work and imagery has played a key role in obtaining funding and we look forward to seeing this fantastic facility move forwards over the coming months.”
Professor Dame Glynis Breakwell, president and vice-chancellor of the University of Bath, said:
“I am delighted that IAAPS has received the support and backing of the Government. The University of Bath has over 40 years of automotive research excellence in collaboration with some of the world’s leading companies and is ideally placed to turn this opportunity into a reality.
“I look forward to this fantastic facility opening its doors in 2020, helping to ensure the UK maintains and expands its global position within the automotive sector.”
Stride Treglown produced the feasibility study and provided the visuals for the proposed development.