Double boost by the sea luring fresh investment

Patrick Wiggins on North Ayrshire regeneration

The new waterfront developments prove attractive and useful.

A NUMBER of new commercial properties are contributing to the regeneration of North Ayrshire, attracting business and enterprise into the area, with two major areas of progress in particular set to provide a major boost.

Irvine Bay Regeneration Company has played a vital role in both – brokering a deal that leverages a seven figure investment and protects and develops the area’s key strategic investment site; and completing an important development that provides a cornerstone for a bigger project still to come.

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With some properties sold or let, others available and further developments in the pipeline, opportunities for businesses to grow into new accommodation or relocate to the area are currently plentiful.

The first project to advance has seen North Ayrshire Council agree to buy 120 acres of land from Scottish Enterprise in order to secure ownership of a Strategic Investment Campus - one of the largest undeveloped employment sites in the UK.

Despite ownership of the SIS moving to the Council, Scottish Enterprise will remain committed to the ongoing development of the site and will reinvest the money they receive from the sale of the land back into the project.

Scottish Enterprise will also contribute up to £50,000 a year for up to five years to aid the ongoing development, marketing and promotion of the site.

There are now plans in place to carry out a series of development works and infrastructure improvements to encourage inward investment.

This includes investing £1.35 million to extending the spine road and £1.4 million to establish a number of development plots which can accommodate units ranging from 5,000 – 30,000 sq m along with accompanying landscaping works, new signage and service ducts.

A total of £200,000 will also be used to improve the area’s drainage.

This investment will be funded through contributions from the European Regional Development Fund, IBRC, Scottish Enterprise and the Council, building upon investment already made by Irvine Bay Regeneration Company.

The second key advance has seen the completion of the development of a stunning new £3 million building at Ardrossan Quayside as part of the regeneration of Ardrossan North Shore.

A new office development has been created, taking advantage of a wonderful waterfront location providing high profile, flexible space over three floors, including balconies over the views. The ground floor offers the potential for a range of additional uses including shops and restaurant next to the Arran ferry terminal. Additionally there is planning consent for a hotel. Procurement partner, hub South West, recently handed over the project completed by contractor Ashleigh (Scotland) Limited.

Other work continues. Our Annickbank development within i3, appears to be just what occupiers have been waiting for, it offers modern space with a high sustainability credentials, the park even produces its own electricity

• Patrick Wiggins, Chief Executive, Irvine Bay Regeneration Company.