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SWH Civils celebrate the start of Science Park project

SWH Civils were accompanied by an East Devon MP this morning to celebrate the next chapter in the Exeter Science Park’s development.

Foreign Office Minister & MP for East Devon, Hugo Swire, joined SWH Civils at the Exeter Science Park today to celebrate the start of work on the park’s climate cluster, where the Met Office recently announced their next generation supercomputer would be based, subject to planning permission.

The cutting of the first turf heralded the start of work on the road opening up this new cluster, which has been aptly named ‘Upper Richardson’ after meteorologist Lewis Fry Richardson, who first proposed numerical weather prediction (NWP) modelling.

The road has been funded from the Government’s Regional Growth Fund, opening up of the site for the Met Office and climate cluster, known as the Global Environmental Futures (GEF) Campus.

SWH Civils has been appointed to build the road, which is due to be completed by April 2015 and work on the Met Office IT hall and collaboration space will start early 2015.

This phase of the scheme relates to the provision of infrastructure to facilitate the construction of two development plots known as ‘Redhayes Cluster’ and ‘Ridgetop Cluster’ at Exeter Science Park. It is proposed that the Science Park Scheme will create a unique environment for innovation and investment that will strengthen the regional economy.

Councillor Andrew Leadbetter, Devon County Council Cabinet Member for Economy and Growth, said: "It was a huge achievement for Devon when the Met Office moved its headquarters to Exeter in 2003. This latest investment by the Met Office in creating a new climate research supercomputer on the Science Park will place Devon and Exeter at the forefront of climate research. This is exactly the sort of high tech investment that the Exeter and East Devon Growth Point was designed to attract and it is delivering on that. Devon County Council has invested significant time and resource in bringing the Science Park to fruition and I anticipate that the Met Office will act as a real catalyst in driving job growth and private sector investment".

Following the event Hugo Swire was given an update on progress on the other schemes in the Exeter and East Devon Growth Point. He met with representatives from SkyPark, and the E.ON Energy Centre before going on to tour Cranbrook to see for himself how the new community is developing, taking in the train station site, the neighbourhood shops and the education campus before meeting key members of the community at St. Martins Primary School.

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