‘Today’s giants and tomorrow’s unicorns’ set for 635-acre Somerset campus

Energy & Low Carbon Industry | Property & Construction | South West | Technology

A 635-acre tech campus will be developed on brownfield land in Somerset – a development which is being heralded as a blueprint for future smart and clean campuses.

Gravity will become home to responsible and fast-growing companies associated with manufacturing, robotics, artificial intelligence, electric vehicles, assembly and distribution space, R&D and offices.

Landowner This Is Gravity Ltd, says the campus aims to accelerate the UK’s clean growth agenda.

The firm has appointed JLL as sole agent for the site, which is now under development, with the remit to ‘bring the world’s most innovative companies and the UK’s future unicorns’ to Gravity.

JLL says that by attracting today’s giants and tomorrow’s unicorns, there will also be significant opportunities for collaboration.

Tom Curtis, Co-CEO of Gravity, said:At Gravity, we are committed to creating a connected and sustainable mixed-use smart campus which will attract some of the world’s most innovative and forward-thinking companies.

“Among many other attributes, JLL’s commitment to sustainability ensures they are the perfect fit for this scheme.

“From start-up tech leaders of tomorrow to established multinationals and experts in advanced manufacturing, we believe that this site will deliver R&D as a result of knowledge sharing and harnessing the region’s talent from its leading universities and colleges.

“Underpinning this philosophy is a clear commitment to help drive the UK’s clean growth agenda.”

The site is strategically located just off junction 23 of the M5 at Bridgwater, with on-site freight and passenger rail terminals, proximity to Bristol international airport, and Bristol deep seaport.

With onsite clean energy solutions, resilient dark fibre, unrivalled transport links, an accessible talent pool and knowledge economy – including four top-tier universities close by – Gravity’s flat site provides occupiers with the ability to build, expand, and develop faster and efficiently.

To enable Gravity to deliver its clean energy promise, it has signed a 50-year agreement with E.ON to provide bespoke renewable and low-carbon on-site energy solutions.

These are anticipated to be on-site from autumn 2020 at the same time as completion of the link road direct to the M5 is expected.

The smart campus’ design – drawn up following consultation with a team of economic analysts, sustainability and environmental specialists – responds to shifting global trends in consumption, energy use, automation and digitalisation, creating thousands of long-term jobs.

Chris Ireland, JLL’s UK CEO, said: “We look forward to working with This Is Gravity to create their vision and attract leading businesses to the site.

“In Gravity we are partnering with someone who is also focused on what’s good for business and for a more sustainable future.

“JLL’s progressive approach means we’re integrating sustainability into all our advice in order to work with clients such as Gravity to maximise the benefits of a sustainable approach across the property sector.”


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