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Secretary of State opens Neath Port Talbot’s award winning energy positive Bay Technology Centre

The Bay Technology Centre

The award winning, energy positive Bay Technology Centre at the Baglan Energy Park has been officially opened by Secretary of State for Wales the Rt Hon David TC Davies MP.

The Leader of Neath Port Talbot Council, Cllr Steve Hunt (left) with the Rt Hon David TC Davies MP, Secretary of State for Wales at the opening of the Bay Technology with (centre) Swansea Council Leader Cllr Rob Stewart, Chair of the Swansea Bay City Deal’s Joint Committee

The Secretary of State was welcomed to the new building on Thursday, June 22nd, 2023 by the Leader of Neath Port Talbot Council, Cllr Steve Hunt.

Cllr Hunt said: “Supporting this council’s Decarbonisation and Renewable Energy Strategy (DARE), the centre is a step change in approach to building design and surpasses the ‘net zero’ concept to provide what is in effect a building as a power station – the first commercial facility in Wales that is energy positive in operation.”

The centre was developed by Neath Port Talbot Council to provide extra commercial property in response to the full occupation of the neighbouring Innovation Centre and the demand for high quality business space.

The £8.5m scheme was awarded £3.75m in European Regional Development Funding alongside £3m from the Swansea Bay City Deal and £500,000 from Welsh Government’s Economic Stimulus Fund. Neath Port Talbot Council committed £1.25m.

The centre has won several awards to date including:

  • Net Zero award in the Constructing Excellence Wales (CEW) Awards (June 2022),
  • Sustainability Award in the Insider Wales Property Awards (June 2022), and
  • Commercial Property Project of the Year British Construction Industry Awards 2022 (October 2022).

The 25,000 sq ft centre hosts office and laboratory space for start-up companies, indigenous businesses and inward investors looking for a base to set up and grow their operations – helping support innovation, diversification and the growth of the regional economy.

It has a focus on innovation from a range of industry sectors including energy, digital, life sciences and similar innovative business activities. It sits in one of Wales’s prime business locations, right next to both the M4 and the main Swansea to London railway line.

Cllr Jeremy Hurley, Neath Port Talbot Council’s Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Economic Growth, said: “The aim is to create an environment where businesses can flourish and where products can be developed and commercialised to support the growth of regional business activities and employment.”

Since opening, the centre has attracted innovative tenants and is now looking for new tenants to call this ground-breaking new centre home.

Its range of industry-leading tenants so far include ProColl Ltd, a synthetic biology company, McCann and Partners, specialising in providing building services associated with mechanical, electrical and public health engineering systems, SWS Certification Ltd, a leader in the aircraft interiors industry, Lyris Technology Ltd and Crossflow Energy Company Ltd.

Opening the centre, Welsh Secretary David TC Davies said: “I’m delighted to officially open the Bay Technology Centre today. The UK Government’s priority is to grow a modern economy for Wales, create well paid jobs and spread prosperity, whilst working towards our net zero ambitions.

“This is a place where cutting edge ideas can grow into successful businesses, and it’s the first commercial building in Wales that produces more energy than it consumes. We are proud to invest in this facility, along with our partners, which is truly innovative”.

Welsh Government Economy Minister, Vaughan Gething, added:

“I very much welcome the opening of the new Bay Technology Centre on Baglan Energy Park. This is a fabulous new facility, built with support from Welsh Government and partners as part of the Swansea Bay City Deal.

“As we invest today for a greener, high tech, innovative Welsh economy, projects like the Technology Centre, bolstered by the Celtic Freeport proposals on low carbon technologies, including floating offshore wind, hydrogen, carbon capture and biofuels will drive our goal to reach net zero. With powerful, long term partnerships, the region has an exciting opportunity to win thousands of new high quality, skilled jobs and lasting careers.

“I have worked intensively to help secure a stable future for partners across Baglan Energy Park and I hope this new Technology Centre can provide inspiration for what we can do, working closely and collaboratively across the Welsh public sector, industry and academia to decarbonise our economy, building a stronger, fairer, greener future for us all.”