Warwickshire firm to spend £30m on Inverness air park
A development company has said it would expect to spend £30m in creating the first phase of a new business park at the main airport in the Highlands.
Warwickshire-based Roxhill has signed a seven-year agreement with Inverness Airport Business Park (IABP) to develop more than 400,000 sq ft (37,161 sq m).
IABP said the deal was one of the most significant for the Highlands in years and could lead to more than 1,200 jobs.
Work on the first phase could start by the end of this year.
Roxhill has sought occupiers, such as freight handling, logistics and warehousing companies, for the first phase of the development.
Executive chairman David Kerr said: "Inverness is a fast growing city, yet it has a real shortage of industrial space.
He added: "I would certainly hope to see infrastructure work under way before the end of this year, with businesses open on site in 2012."
IABP is the result of a joint venture between Highlands and Islands Airports, Moray Estates and Highlands and Islands Enterprise, with support from Highland Council.
The organisation hopes to develop a total of 617 acres (250 hectares) next to the airport.
Alan Price, chairman of IABP, said the deal was "hugely significant" for the economic development of the Highlands and Islands.
He said: "We are confident Roxhill will attract large occupiers to the business park, meaning jobs and investment for the area.
"The board of IABP now looks forward to working in partnership with Roxhill as it develops phase one of the site in accordance with the design guidelines we have set."
Sandy Park, convener of Highland Council, added: "Highland Council welcomes this investment.
"It will bring significant employment opportunities which will go somewhere towards mitigating the loss of over 2,000 jobs at RAF Kinloss."