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University of Birmingham agrees life sciences campus deal

Institute will lead development of a campus in Selly Oak which will conduct research and studies to bring new medical treatments to market

The new life sciences campus will count the QE Hospital among its neighbours

The University of Birmingham is to lead development of a new life sciences park in a city suburb after agreeing a land deal.

The university has acquired ten acres of the Battery Park site close to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Selly Oak where a major new medical campus will be built called Birmingham Life Sciences Park.

The park will include state-of-the-art research and commercial facilities that will bring together partners in a bid to drive innovation and harness the academic, clinical and commercial sectors in the city.

The aim is to support R&D to take innovative new healthcare technologies from the early stages of concept to real life application.

Birmingham Life Sciences Park will be delivered by Birmingham Health Partners which is an alliance between the university, University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust and Birmingham Women's and Children's Hospital Trust.

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Investment has been granted by the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership while support from Battery Park's owner Birmingham City Council has allowed work to begin.

The life sciences campus will benefit from its location in a densely populated suburb of the city and also its proximity to several health institutions and the University of Birmingham's campus.

This proposal forms part of much wider plans for the former metal works site which include a new Sainsbury's supermarket to replace its existing story in nearby Chapel Lane, other retail units and more than 400 student bedrooms in a complex reaching up to 18 storeys.

University of Birmingham vice-chancellor Sir David Eastwood said: "This is a landmark step for our dynamic regional collaboration in life sciences and enhances our essential infrastructure enabling great advances in the way we tackle global healthcare challenges.

"We are already tackling cancer, chronic and rare diseases, mental health, trauma and antibiotic resistance and making significant progress in this area, bringing real benefits to our communities locally and around the world.

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"I look forward to working with our partners over the next few years to ensure we sustain momentum in this area."

Birmingham City Council leader Coun John Clancy added: "The Battery Park development is part of an exciting period of regeneration for Birmingham as the city reinforces its position as a leading player in the life sciences sector.

"The life sciences park to be built here will complement the recently opened Institute of Transitional Medicine and help to transform Birmingham into a global hub for medical research."

John Williams, managing director of Birmingham Health Partners, said: "This is an important development for Birmingham Health Partners, that will help us deliver at pace the benefits of cutting edge research to the communities we serve."

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