Kier will begin construction works on The Forum this march. The digital hub will boast a variety of facilities including workspaces for tech firms and digital conference facilities.
The cost is expected to be in the region of £107m with £5 million of funding accessed from the the government’s levelling-up fund. The £5 million will go into The Forge – a high-tech ‘incubator’ hub for fledgling businesses in the tech and digital sectors based at The Forum.
The digital campus is part of the wider generation of the city of Gloucester – in particular the King’s Quarter regeneration, which will deliver two acres of pedestrianised public space.
As part of the project, Kier will providing training and job opportunities via a physical and virtual on-site learning hub. The hub will remain on-site following completion of the digital campus so that local residents and businesses will have continued support.
The digital campus will mainly attract tech businesses from start-ups to big occupiers. It is expected that the Forum will be making waves in digital innovation as one of the most digitally connected and cyber-secure developments in the country.
‘Cutting edge of innovation’
Esther Croft, development director at Reef Group, said: “Kier’s commitment to sustainability, learning and employment opportunities and connection to Gloucestershire made them the ideal contractor to deliver The Forum.
“The digital campus is going to be at the cutting edge of tech innovation and will provide attractive workspaces for the next generation of tech talent in the UK.
“The project is progressing at pace and will be a fantastic addition to the city, retaining graduate talent as well as appealing to tech professionals looking to relocate.”
Andy Bolas, regional director for Kier Construction Western & Wales, commented: “Working with Gloucester City Council and Reef Group, we look forward to delivering this flagship digital centre which is set to be a beacon for technology and cyber security businesses in the south west.
“Over 85% of the project team are based in Gloucestershire which means we will utilise our local knowledge, skills and supply chain partners to complete this project.
“The learning hub is also a unique and enduring legacy which aims to provide sustainable job and training opportunities for the Gloucester community.
Main image: The Forum digital campus (Credit: Reef Group)
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