SOG Group has begun the process of engaging with investors for its Heath Park development in Runcorn, Cheshire.
The vision for Heath Park evolved from a global competition challenging architects, designers, planners and forward thinkers to create a sustainable futuristic environment, powered by renewable energy, where people can live, work and play.
This resulted in an extraordinary and visionary scheme to meet the challenges of Climate Change through the creation of a 21st century version of Port Sunlight *.
SOG originally planned to unveil proposals for Heath Park at MIPIM 2020 which was cancelled as a result of the pandemic. Work behind the scenes progressed over the past two years with a team of experts from SOG methodically researching and validating how the location can be regenerated in a realistic and commercially viable venture for ethical investors. Predicted trends for future living including employment, housing, leisure, community, transport and energy consumption have been assessed in a feasibility study, carried out in conjunction with Lancaster and Liverpool Universities, to scrutinise the potential for the 57-acre site.
A Liverpool City Region ‘Beacon Project, Heath Park is one of 35 ethical schemes promoted in the UK Government’s Global Investment Atlas.
Real Estate Agent Tim Metson says: “SOG own and operate The Heath Business and Technical Park, an established and thriving centre that is currently home to 120 businesses supporting 2,000 jobs. Our vision is to build on this success by transforming the location to meet the challenges of the future by creating a vibrant Net Zero carbon environment of residential, commercial and retail space to complement the existing Park. There’s also a ground-breaking Vertical Farm, powered by renewable energy, that is focal to a scheme that has superb ESG credentials and is sure to appeal to global ethical investors.”
Metson adds: “We had intended to unveil the Heath Park proposals at MIPIM in 2020 which was cancelled, so it is appropriate that we are now using MIPIM 2022 as a platform to reach out to ethical investors to raise the funds necessary to turn this amazing vision into reality.
We are officially launching our Investor Pack at MIPIM but are already very encouraged by enquiries received from several major global investors with expressions of interest.”
Heath Park includes:
- A mixed-use development with ultra-energy efficient housing, designed to maximise available space, in environments where people can gather, play and socialise in multi-functional streets.
- Parkland and wooded areas for relaxation and recreation.
- A vibrant new centre with accessible services including shops, restaurants, bars, leisure, arts and medical facilities.
- All built around an inclusive transport strategy, enabling people of all ages to be active and connected, whether or not they own a car…with safe walkways, cycle routes and easy access to public transport.
Metson says: “The goal is for Heath Park’s to be powered by 100 per cent renewable energy. The North-West region of the UK has a number of energy initiatives revolving around solar, wind power, tidal energies and hydrogen that can all be utilised to meet our carbon-free aspirations. Local Food production and Vertical Farming are focal with a world-leading ‘Next Generation’ Vertical Farm featuring at the heart of the community. This unique 55,000 sq. ft. facility promises to totally transform the industry through realising the goal of Net Zero Vertical Farms. Heath Park is a fantastic opportunity for ethical investors to be part of a truly ground-breaking ‘shovel-ready’ scheme. It is a unique model with exceptional ESG values that can replicated for other locations in the UK and around the world.”
Steve Rotheram, Liverpool City Region Mayor, says: “SOG’s vision of transforming The Heath Business and Technical Park into ‘Heath Park’ – a state-of-the-art, sustainable environment in which to live and work – is precisely the kind of inspirational project that aligns with our vision of a growing, dynamic and prosperous Liverpool City Region. This beacon project complements Liverpool City Region’s Local Industrial Strategy while SOG’s intention to target ethical investors for this excellent initiative perfectly aligns with our innovative model of truly inclusive economic growth.”
* Heath Park’s ethos is modelled on ‘Port Sunlight’, the Victorian village built by industrialist Viscount Leverhulme in the 1800s. Reacting to appalling living conditions at the time, Lord Leverhulme’s inspiring idea created houses and community facilities in a healthy environment for workers of his soap factory.
About SOG Group
SOG Group is one of the UK’s top independent operators of business and science parks and are renowned site regeneration specialists. SOG own The Heath Business and Technical Park in Runcorn, Cheshire, which is home to over 120 individual businesses that between them support the employment of around 2,000 people. Using The Heath business model, SOG created a consultancy operation under the name of ‘Fusion’. SOG’s Fusion team spearheaded the regeneration of a massive site in east London, formerly home to a global pharmaceutical company, where it created Londoneast-uk Business and Technical Park. Until February 2019, SOG operated Londoneast-uk as a sister Park to The Heath before selling it to a company owned by the London Borough of Barking & Dagenham. Through its Fusion concept, SOG helped to generate over £2 billion of inward investment to the Dagenham site regeneration programme.
SOG’s Runcorn operation is a unique example of how a successful science and technology park should operate. Many of the organisations located in the facilities are at the very cutting-edge of scientific R&D, with firms specialising from nanotechnology to carbon emissions research and from pioneering work on hip and knee joint replacements to water and waste-water treatment technology. As The Heath site has reached full capacity, SOG has embarked on a new build-programme which allows existing fast-growing resident businesses to move out of multi-occupancy units into their own exclusive bespoke buildings, designed and built by SOG’s team. SOG is currently working on the vision to transform The Heath into a Net Zero carbon environment over the next decade through the creation of Heath Park.
Media contact: Paul Smith Associates (PSA) +44 (0) 7771 623 007