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29 May 2024

Local Contractors Encouraged to Bid for University Upgrade Project

Wrexham University has announced a new tender opportunity for the design and construction of an upgrade project at its OpTIC Technology Centre.

The scheme will reinforce the centre’s position as an industry leader and foster collaboration with other optical, life science and technology businesses that rely on its state-of-the-art facilities.

Mechanical and electrical specialists are invited to submit bids for a series of improvements at the centre.

The refurbishment project will enable the OpTIC Technology Centre, located at the St Asaph campus, to unlock further world-leading research opportunities in the field of precision optics, particularly in flight and space applications.

It forms part of the new Enterprise Engineering and Optics Centre (EEOC), which is being delivered across the university’s Plas Coch campus in Wrexham and the OpTIC Technology Centre.

Growth Deal funding, through Ambition North Wales, is providing £11.55 million of the total value of the project.

Construction of the EEOC at the university’s Wrexham campus got underway in February, which saw ministers and partners come together as part of an official turf cutting ceremony, to celebrate the start of the North Wales Growth Deal’s first construction project.

There will be a number of components to the St Asaph project, some of which include the refurbishment of the centre’s Metrology Lab, which will involve the complete replacement of ceilings, lighting, and a new ventilation system to meet strict performance standards for temperature, humidity and draughts.

It will also include an upgrade of the Science Labs through the replacement of lighting and other finishes, which will reduce energy consumption, and works to upgrade the ventilation equipment which serves the Polishing Lab. A fully functional laboratory area is also to be created through the scheme. Computer and software updates also feature as part of the upgrade.

Alongside the project, there will be new equipment purchases which will enable the university and its partners to deliver on the objectives of the project and the North Wales and surrounding economy.

Paul Moran, Capital Projects Manager at Wrexham University, said:

“We are excited to be delivering this project as part of our overarching Campus 2025 campus redevelopment programme.

“Social value is key to us as part of our civic mission here at the University, so we are extremely keen to hear from local contractors who are eager to work with us and make a positive contribution to the local community through the enhancement of our world-class facilities.”

Hedd Vaughan-Evans, Head of Operations at Ambition North Wales, added:

“The improvements in environmental management systems at OpTIC being commissioned through this Invitation to Tender will contribute towards the wider carbon reductions of the overall EEOC project, while ensuring that facilities can keep pace with technological advances and the ever-evolving demands of the optics industry. With the optics and photonics sector expected to grow significantly over coming years, this  investment will support the sector in North Wales to grow and take advantage of future opportunities.”

Based on the St Asaph Business Park, OpTIC Technology Centre is a business and technology centre owned and operated by Wrexham University. It links research and development, industry and academia and has a proven track record in providing technology companies with high-quality facilities and a community spirit to grow and develop their business.

OpTIC Technology Centre also specialises in innovative optical components and systems, product development, engineering and technology consulting – and has developed cutting-edge technology with an unparalleled array of highly specialist equipment and laboratory space.

Businesses interested in tendering for this opportunity can download the full tender pack by visiting Sell2Wales View notice – Sell2Wales (gov.wales) The deadline for this tender is 5 July.

Following appointment, the successful contractor is expected to take around three months further design work, with work starting onsite this November and due for completion April 2025.

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