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Innovation Birmingham reveals latest development plans

Maker Wharf will be a home to fabrication and prototyping facility and will sit next to iCentrum complex

CGI of the new Maker Wharf building

The latest phase of the expansion of a Birmingham digital and technology park has been revealed.

Innovation Birmingham Campus is planning to add a new 21,527 sq ft fabrication and prototyping facility called 'Maker Wharf' to its hub next to Aston University.

It will have digital prototyping equipment to promote the development of innovative commercial technical and creative products alongside flexible office and manufacturing space.

Plans have now been lodged with Birmingham City Council for the four-storey building, designed by architecture practice AHR, which will join Faraday Wharf, iCentrum and the Universities Centre on the campus.

The new building, on land next to iCentrum, is due to be completed in spring 2018 while future work includes an additional 64,500 sq ft of enterprise space, which is set to double the size of the current campus by 2020.

Last month, Innovation Birmingham launched a bid to find a new funding partner to help deliver these latest phases of development.

Chief executive David Hardman said: "The operational aim of Maker Wharf will be to link Birmingham's manufacturing legacy to the new 'maker movement'.

"Given our digital focus, the new facilities will bridge digital technologies to the maker economy.

"In addition, we are also looking to encourage practical collaborations between our digital/tech community with practicing artists across the digital arts spectrum.

"We have already secured considerable interest in Maker Wharf and I believe it will also provide greater depth, spirit and resilience to our connected innovation community on the campus and across the city."

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