Enterprise zone receiving very high interest, says MAG

MAG Developments, Manchester Airport's property development business, said it is receiving around 120 enquiries a week since the Government designated the airport as the enterprise zone for Greater Manchester.

Stephanie Mullenger, business development director for Manchester Airports Group Developments, said: "The level of interest in the new Manchester Airport Enterprise Zone continues to be very high and in the five weeks since the initial Government announcement there's been a significant amount of interest locally, nationally and internationally. We are continuing to work with Manchester City Council, plus other stakeholders and local authorities, to confirm a definitive border and governance arrangements for the Zone. We encourage interested parties to visit the new website to find out more about the Government incentives to locate here."

Mullenger said queries have ranged from businesses looking to locate within the zone and even from individuals offering their services for building and contract work.

MAG said the core proposition of the enterprise zone will focus on the development of Airport City.

In April, MAG said detailed planning applications will be ready to be submitted for the 2m sq ft office-led expansion, subject to the public consultation, by the end of 2011 and work on the first phase of 60-acre Airport City will begin in 2012.

The concept of Airport City looks at attracting businesses from sectors such as logistics and freight, as well as those seeking high quality office accommodation for research and development and health related uses with an aim of building on the proximity to Wythenshawe Hospital as a centre of excellence, plus visitor accommodation, hotels and leisure uses.

Peel's Liverpool Waters and Manchester Airport were amongst the first 11 enterprise zones announced in the Government's Budget in March.

Enterprise zones are set to benefit with tax breaks for inward investors and simplified planning rules.

MAG Developments, which accounts for 25% of the Manchester Airport group profit, has launched a new website designed and created by Manchester-based PagePlay which gives more details on the airport enterprise zone.

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It’s not that surprising, given there are now only 11 places in the whole of the UK where preferential grants can be garnered.

By Thomas Sopwith