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12-01-2022

Turbo of 10 million euros for Kennispark Twente

Turbo of 10 million euros for Kennispark Twente

The Enschede City Council is proposing to invest €10 million in the further development of Kennispark Twente. In doing so, the Board is implementing the ‘Urban Development and Mobility Plan for Kennispark’ adopted by the Council in 2021.

“We want to speed up the growth and strengthening of Kennispark, one of the most powerful engines of the Twente economy. The plans for this have been developed together with entrepreneurs, the University of Twente and the province,” said Alderman June Nods. “With this substantial investment, we offer certainty about our contribution to realize our joint ambition.”

Job growth to 12,000 expected

The aim of the cooperating parties is to forge the Business and Science Park and the University of Twente campus into a single entity. The resulting innovation campus is among the Top 10 in the Netherlands and should be able to attract and retain talent. The number of direct jobs at Kennispark Twente can be expected to grow to 12,000 in the coming years.

Commitment to improving public space

The municipal investment impulse of 10 million euros is intended for the creation of new and improvement of existing public space, the realization of new solutions for mobility in the area and the preparation for construction of the lots still to be issued. In the first phase, the emphasis is on the area between the university and the Business and Science Park and along Hengelosestraat. An important part of the plans is the construction of a parking building that will make it possible to concentrate the parking for all the still to be issued plots in one place. This will create space for a more intensive building programme for living, working and facilities in combination with the creation of high-quality, low-traffic public space aimed at meeting and connecting people.

100 million in public and private investments

The municipality’s investments are in line with plans of the University of Twente on its own campus and planned private investments across Hengelosestraat. These include the Advanced Manufacturing Center of the Fraunhofer Project Center, Demcon Headquarter, various investments by the Herstructurerings Maatschappij Overijssel (HMO) and a residential building for young professionals by housing corporation Domijn. The cooperation agreement with the ASR Dutch Science Park Fund, which was concluded in December 2021, also focuses on the accelerated development of the same area. It is expected that the municipal investments will be accompanied by more than €100 million in private real estate investments over the next ten years.

Booster for private investments

Anne-Wil Lucas, Area Director at Kennispark Twente, expresses her appreciation for the municipality’s investment plan: “We are pleased with the decision of the Municipal Executive, because it shows that the municipality of Enschede is truly willing to invest in the future of Kennispark. With the extra resources from the investment fund, we can give Kennispark a campus-worthy design, with communal outdoor areas and meeting places. This will not only create a pleasant working environment, but should also lead to meetings, knowledge sharing and therefore innovation. Moreover, with these investments by the municipality of Enschede, we are also attracting private investments: by offering a parking solution, the plots on Hengelosestraat can be developed.

Link with new building

“The municipality’s investment in the parking building is linked to the development of two industrial buildings along Hengelosestraat, intended for a labour-intensive mix of laboratories, business premises, offices and support facilities. Each building will provide space for 240 to 400 new jobs at knowledge-intensive companies that fit the profile of Kennispark Twente,” said Alderman Nods. “We will start construction of the parking facility as soon as the environmental permit for the first business building has been granted. At that point, there will be sufficient certainty about the occupancy rate and thus the revenue generated by the car park, we will limit the financial risk for the municipality and Kennispark will be able to continue fulfilling its role as the driving force behind employment in Twente. We started this council period with the motto: Proud, Bold, Building, Chance Enschede. This development is a fine example of that.”

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