Work starts on City Region Deal-funded business units in Fife
Fife’s flagship industrial innovation investment programme is taking shape as construction work starts on nine new business units at Queensway Industrial Estate in Glenrothes.
With £48.4 million of funding over ten years, Fife’s Industrial Innovation Investment Programme will deliver much-needed new buildings and serviced sites in key locations in Mid and South Fife.
The programme, which forms part of the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal, will create 1,000 new skilled permanent jobs and almost 600 short-term construction jobs over the 15-year lifetime of the City Deal. Joint working between the region’s universities, Fife businesses and Fife Council will deliver high-value jobs.
The programme is already boosting the economy through construction activity.
Infrastructure secretary, MSP Michael Matheson, said: “Since 2014 we have committed £1.8 billion to deals and associated investment to drive growth that will deliver significant and lasting economic benefits for individuals, businesses and communities across the country.
“These deals benefit Scotland as a whole, creating thousands of jobs and upskilling local labour markets. They truly have the power to build on the area’s significant strengths and expertise, as we are witnessing first-hand in Fife with the start of this flagship industrial innovation investment programme.”
The City Region Deal is ensuring skilled local jobs for local people. Michael McManus, aged 19, from Glenrothes, who is in his first year of a Modern Apprenticeship, with Bell Group, Kirkcaldy, is set to work on the site.
The Bell Group, Kirkcaldy, is a branch of UK’s largest commercial painting and decorating contractor.
Michael said: “Through my apprenticeship I have been able to work on, and improve, my painting and decorating skills. I’m confident in my role and I’ve learnt new skills. In the future I’ll continue to improve to be the best painter and decorator I can possibly be.”
Fife Council Modern Apprentice Matthew Fleming, age 25, from Leven, will be involved in fitting the plumbing inside the nine units. Matthew will fit the mechanical plumbing fixtures and fittings. Now in his fourth year of his Modern Apprenticeship, Matthew has developed skills in plumbing installations and maintenance, installing and servicing gas appliances, as well as bathroom repairs and replacements.
Cllr Fiona Grant, Glenrothes area committee convener, said: “The units are a huge step forward in offering businesses accommodation fit for the future and will help will boost economic development across Mid Fife. The development includes a connection to the district heating plant, a new access road and car parking on land to the north of Flemington Road.”
Cllr Altany Craik, economy, tourism, planning & transportation committee convener, said: “Our focus in Fife is firmly on fairer economic growth, where everyone benefits from good employment opportunities and regional investments. Work starting in Glenrothes is the first visible sign of the many positive changes that the City Region Deal will bring.
“The Deal is set to help grow the regional economy through collaboration and building on the region’s existing strengths in key sectors and industries.
“Through the wider City Region Deal Fife businesses will have increased opportunities to build on the value they generate from their data by adopting digital technologies, and use this to create new products, and generate both new supply chain arrangements and new business models - creating and safeguarding jobs.”
Fife’s Industrial Innovation Investment programme will increase the supply of serviced employment land and new industrial, office and business space in Fife. This is an important step forward in delivering the programme that will encourage more businesses to locate and grow within Fife, and secure a further £30m of investment by the private sector.