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Plans for the UK’s first ‘Airport City’ are Unveiled

George Osborne has revealed plans for the development of a £659 million ‘Airport City’ at Manchester Airport. The site was selected last March as one of the Government’s new Enterprise Zones and since then a detailed Masterplan has been created by Manchester Airports Group (MAG) which outlines the vision to transform Manchester Airport from a transport hub into an international business destination in its own right.

The 150-acre regeneration scheme will deliver in excess of five million square feet of new premium business premises, with an aim of attracting international companies that would not previously have been located in the region, or the UK.

After becoming fully operational from April 2012, the 116-hectare Manchester Enterprise Zone will create up to 20,000 new jobs over the next 15-years. During this time, the Airport City will deliver 1.5 million sq ft of offices, 650,000 sq ft advanced manufacturing, up to 100,000 sq ft of retail and leisure,

and 1.4 million sq ft logistics & warehousing. There will be two core zones; one, a development adjacent to the airport’s existing railway station and to the north of the M56, which will focus on hotel, office and advanced manufacturing uses, and a second area adjacent to the existing cargo centre at Junction 6 of the M56 will focus on freight and logistic uses.

Manchester Airport Group seeks to engage potential development partners to assist in the delivery of the project; hence they are due to release an ‘Expression of Interest Document’ detailing the opportunities available.

This will be officially released through an open competitive process in February 2012.

Tata Steel Speciality, a subsidiary of Tata Steel is concentrating on increasing it supply of high value products to the aerospace, oil and gas, industrial bearings, and automotive industries, in Asia and North America.

Tata Steel has invested £20.3 million in Speciality Steels in the last year, including two new furnaces, replacement equipment and investment in reducing energy consumption. The business, which has a turnover of £700 million, has six sites including its Rotherham and Stocksbridge bases. They use an electric arc furnace to melt the steel and have the capacity to produce around one million tonnes of steel a year. Currently running at 75 percent capacity, Mark Broxholme, Managing Director said the aim is


Tata Speciality is coping well with the Steel demand

“the demand for power in China

to increase it to 90 percent in the next three to four years. He also added that their strategy is to have a third of its sales going into Europe, a third into Asia and a third into America within five years. Currently, ten percent goes into Asia and 60 percent to Europe.

Within the aerospace industry, their steel is used for components including engine shafts, rings and casing, and landing gear. Speciality Steels envisage the creation of more opportunities for them as airlines search for ways to mitigate the rising cost of oil. “Our intention is

The National Metals Technology Centre Quarterly Journal

to grow our position in this market [aerospace]. Meanwhile, oil rigs are having to go deeper and into more extreme parts of the world, requiring more steel.” In addition, “the demand for power in China and India is insatiable.

and India is insatiable. Global automotive growth around the world is also phenomenal...

Global automotive growth around the world is also phenomenal, especially in Asia.”

He also emphasised the importance of supply chains, particularly the ones involved advanced materials in Yorkshire: “It’s incredibly important that the local and national politicians understand the value of having robust supply chains in the UK. Companies involved in supply chains create opportunities for each other and can attract other complementary businesses, which can mean new investment and jobs. However, if companies in supply chains fail, it can threaten all the other parts of those supply chains and it’s

incredibly difficult to build them back up again.”

Overall, Mark Broxholme describes the company’s future as “bright”, and said that the company is “better placed” than it was when the last recession struck.

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