ScottishPower and The HALO Scotland have today announced a groundbreaking partnership that will see the energy giant established as the headline partner of the Kilmarnock urban regeneration initiative.
The announcement heralds the launch of a £5 million, five-year programme by ScottishPower and The HALO project. The energy company will be a leader in The HALO’s Innovation and Enterprise Centre and its Digital and Cyber Zone where The HALO and ScottishPower will create a cyber and digital training and learning facility at the forefront of the “Fourth Industrial Revolution”.
To top this all off, ScottishPower’s long term support for The HALO will shine like a beacon via The HALO Light located on the roof of the state of the art building.
The partnership is set to:
- Explore energy innovations for a lower carbon society whilst inspiring a digitally skilled generation
- Harness ScottishPower’s business and technical expertise to support start-up and scale-up businesses located at The HALO
- Create economic growth by driving a new digital and cyber skilled workforce, upskilling ScottishPower’s existing workforce and others through The HALO’s innovative partnership with the Scottish Business Resilience Centre, Ayrshire College and Scottish universities, which will see the creation of accredited courses
- Support The HALO’s employability initiatives through specialist technical input into student learning and practical skills development to enhance the job prospects of local young people
- Working alongside The HALO, establish and develop ScottishPower’s learning partnerships with both Ayrshire College, University of the West of Scotland and beyond
- See ScottishPower partner with The HALO to establish a Children’s Innovation Centre and Nursery of the Future in collaboration with Ayrshire College
The HALO Kilmarnock is an imaginative, innovative and inspirational regeneration initiative located on the site of the former Johnnie Walker bottling plant in Kilmarnock, East Ayrshire. It is being shaped as a multi-faceted brown-field regeneration that will create a unique urban park with a dynamic commercial, educational, cultural, leisure and lifestyle quarter.
A proposed low carbon, renewable deep geothermal district heating network could address fuel costs on the site and have the capability of being extended to service other areas of the community. The development will also include a light manufacturing facility and private rental accommodation for key workers.
The development is one of four HALO projects planned for the UK that are being seen as catalysts for urban regeneration. The next HALO project is proposed for Belfast, with Wales and the North West of England to follow. It is envisaged that The HALO Scotland will connect through road and rail infrastructure directly to the Northern Powerhouse, creating economic benefits across the wider area.
Keith Anderson, CEO of ScottishPower, said: “Across all of our business areas, ScottishPower is working to deliver a low carbon and sustainable future. We are a leader in smart and renewable energy and a perfect fit to help The HALO achieve their objectives. We are excited to explore the opportunities within this innovative project. There will be a focus on young people, digital skills and energy innovations that we hope will help us move towards a decarbonised transport, heat and energy sector.”
Marie Macklin C.B.E., founding director of The HALO, said: “In making this commitment ScottishPower is supporting an urban regeneration project that is going to change the lives of young people, not just in Ayrshire but across the whole of Scotland. With ScottishPower behind it, The HALO is going to rock the Scottish economy, generating economic growth, innovation, digital skills development, enterprise and innovation and I applaud their forward thinking. Together with ScottishPower, The HALO is going to light up Britain.”
First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon MSP, added: “This partnership is great news for the Ayrshire and Scottish economy. It is hugely inspiring to see the Halo development contributing to the regeneration of Kilmarnock and doing so in a way which supports innovation, digital skills and, through this partnership with ScottishPower, contributing to Scotland’s low carbon future.”
UK government minister Lord Duncan said: “Supported by a £3.5 million UK government investment through the Industrial Strategy, the HALO Kilmarnock is an important development that will create jobs, grow the economy and drive innovation. This partnership is a further example of its ambition and drive to innovate and attract new talent to the region.”