The West of England Joint Committee agreed to invest £35m into infrastructure projects when it met at The Guildhall in Bath on Monday October 30.
The Joint Committee is the decision-making body for issues relating to the West of England Combined Authority, Bath & North East Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire councils, and the West of England Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).
Funding was agreed for the following projects:
Institute of Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems (IAAPS)
£10 million to support the University of Bath in establishing a new Institute for Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems (IAAPS), a global centre of excellence, delivering transformational research and innovation in low-emission vehicles. Funding would be used to support construction of the £60m IAAPS facility at the Bristol and Bath Science Park, which will start in summer 2018.
Colston Hall Phase 2 Transformation Project
£5m towards building a classical and contemporary music hall, creating world-class spaces for education and enterprise and improving backstage facilities for artists.
Open Programmable City Region
£4.107m to extend Bristol’s existing Research and Development connectivity network into new parts of the City, creating a platform for further extensions across the whole region. The funding will also enable 3 experimental pilots to be deployed in the City exploring the potential of driverless vehicles (otherwise known as Connected and Autonomous Vehicle (CAV)) R&D and community-led skills development, high tech co‐creation, design and prototyping.
Quantum Technologies Innovation Centre
£15m to build a new innovation facility as part of the University of Bristol’s planned Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus. The centre will focus on the engineering and commercialisation of practical quantum technologies, including the design, development and manufacture of quantum devices for secure communications, new sensors and ultra-powerful Quantum Computers.”
Weston-super-Mare Town Centre Transport Enhancement Scheme
£1.5m towards a package of works including improving pedestrian links and public realm, as well as public transport and cycle improvements including a new bus interchange.
Bristol Virtual Reality Lab
£295k towards a new facility at the Leadworks on Anchor Square in Bristol. This would provide 40 workspaces for small and medium sized businesses carrying out research and development work in Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR). One of the first such facilities in the UK it is supported by University of the West of England and University of Bristol.
Bristol SETsquared Centre Urgent Expansion
£100k is required to bring into use currently undeveloped attic space at Engine Shed to create a further 15-20 desk spaces for the SETsquared incubator to support start-up and scale-up businesses.