The first steel on a £200million business park is now in place as construction of a vital new link road to the site also nears completion.
Business Park South at Teesside International Airport will create up to 4,400 jobs when fully operational, made up of 1.9million sq ft of logistics, distribution, and industrial buildings.
Key progress has now been made on the first unit of the development – with more than 40 tonnes of UK steel brought onto site this week.
The steel has been sourced from British Steel’s Lackenby plant, near Redcar, with up to 50 workers set to work on the project at its height.
Four units covering 130,000sq ft will be created in the first phase of the southside development, with work on the first 25,000sq ft unit now under way. A further 42 tonnes of steel will be delivered in the next week with all beams in place by the end of next week.
The steelwork is being erected by Nationwide Structures – which has offices in Stockton – and follows eight weeks of demolition and earthworks by Middlesbrough-based ZTL Contracting.
Further phases will see plots of between one to 200 acres developed as more businesses look to base themselves at the airport.
Work on the new link road to connect the business park is also now nearing completion after beginning earlier this year.
Drivers travelling along the A67 have seen a new roundabout close to Wilkinson’s Plant Centre taking shape.
The roundabout and new 2km link road will provide access to the 270-acre site where the business park – part of the Teesside Freeport site – is being developed.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “The first steel on the business park and the construction of the link road are further visible evidence of the excellent progress we are making to transform Teesside Airport from not just a great place for passengers but also as a superb location for business.
“The involvement of local companies and the use of British Steel shows we are ensuring that major projects such as this directly benefit firms and workers in our area.
“The business park is essential in our plan to return the airport to profit by helping drive investment and deliver good quality, well-paid jobs for the people of Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool and it fantastic to see it taking shape.”
Both the link road and first unit are scheduled for completion by the end of the year.
Wayne Morris, ZTL Contracting Commercial Director, said: “We are proud to have been involved in the demolition and earthworks for the new business park at Teesside International Airport.
“As a local company, we are committed to supporting the economic development of our region and we are excited to see this project come to fruition. The new business park will create jobs and opportunities for local people, and we are proud to have played a role in its development.”
The new road – built by North-east civil engineering firm Rainton Construction, part of MGL Group – will include a new footpath and cycleway to improve access for pedestrians and cyclists.
Income from the development, which will be suitable for manufacturing, logistics and research and development industries, will go back into financially supporting the airport.
The progress comes just weeks after the award of a contract to construct a 33,000sq ft hangar on the northside of the airport to Barnard Castle-based construction firm S&A Fabrications.
Other recent significant investments from the private sector at Teesside Airport include a £25million investment from Willis Aviation to create a new engineering base, which will create more than 200 jobs in the region.
Defence contractor Draken Europe has also doubled its presence at the airport following the construction of a new hangar, and oil spill response firm 2Excel also now operates from Teesside Airport.