Calthorpe Estates/University of Birmingham

Pebble Mill Science Park

Project Outline

GVA were firstly appointed by landowners Calthorpe Estates and potential development partner, University of Birmingham, to provide advice on the viability of a Bio Tec Incubator Centre to anchor the development of the former BBC Pebble Mill Studio Site. The appointment also involved input from Government Office for the West Midlands and the adjoining landowner (and potential third development partner) Advantage West Midlands.

Since this first commission GVA has subsequently been appointed by Calthorpe Estates to advise on the future development and marketing of the science park.

Services provided

GVA’s specialist Science Park development experience was utilised to assess the potential size, shape, value and cost of the project based upon a variety of assumptions and experience. This included viability and development appraisals together with advice upon public sector “grant” funding and state aid regulations that might be applicable.

How GVA added value

The first engagement with University of Birmingham was at the request of the Central Technology Belt, to demonstrate to University of Birmingham the benefits of involvement with the proposed science park and the ways in which the University could play a part in ensuring its success. GVA’s experience in advising on joint ventures with both private and public sector partners, particularly where some form of “gap” funding may be required and the state aid implications enabled the parties to understand the structure required to bring forward development.

Success to date includes:

  • Ground leasehold transaction with Circle Health to construct a new +100,000 sq ft private hospital.
  • Sale to enable the development of Birmingham’s new dental hospital and school of dentistry.
  • Deal to provide a new BUPA care home (subject to planning).