Torfaen County Borough Council – Life Science and Medi Parc Research

Policy and Research

In 2017, Kathryn Williams (KEW Planning) led the JLL team that prepared the Report on the Economic Impact of the Welsh Government’s investment in the Specialist Critical Care Centre (SCCC) in Llanfrecha, Cwmbran.  This research specifically examined the SCCC, now referred to as the Grange Hospital and the ability to use it as an anchor for investment and job creation as part of a new Medi Park.

Specifically, whether future allocation of employment land was required to support the growth of the Medi Park; a review of best practice and common key successful features associated with similar medical research parks around the UK.  A review of market demand assessing the ability to secure inward investment and occupiers for Research & Development related companies was also included. 

The key findings explained that there is 8.4 ha of land available from the SAA7 employment allocation, which is for healthcare related uses.  A further 12.5 ha is to deliver 300 housing units south of the GUH hospital. The report recommended that due to the topographical constraints it would be preferable to allocate the land to the north for housing.  Additional land to the south should be allocated to deliver more employment land for clustering of medical related uses, and a distribution park. 

The planning application for the SCCC/GUH allowed for a 25% expansion. It explained that over the next 10-15 years further land would be required.  A recommendation that a minimum of 50% of the original land take for the GUH be required to facilitate future expansion.  

This report formed part of the background papers to produce the Strategic Outline Business Case issued to Welsh Government and the Masterplan produced by BDP for approval at Cabinet Council on 7 July 2020.  This report focused solely on Grange site, where the proposed MHISU is to be located.  This is extremely pertinent and exhibits KEW Planning’s knowledge of this specific site.