Braintree District Council announces its investment of £24.3 million into Horizon 120 – the 65 acre business and innovation park being built just off the A131 at Great Notley in Braintree.

The South East Local Enterprise Partnership, which has been allocated funds from the Government, also plans to invest £7 million into the new business park.

This financial backing will create an employment site fit for the future which attracts exciting new firms into the district and offers local residents high quality job and training opportunities. The park has the potential to create up to 2,000 jobs.

The Horizon 120 project forms one part of the Council’s £100 million plus investment plan for the benefit of residents and businesses.

Horizon 120 will be a special place to work. The business park will offer flexible business accommodation, state-of-the-art energy efficient buildings, best-in-class fibre-optic connectivity and electric vehicle charging points. A central hub area to the north could be home to a new enterprise centre, café or restaurant and a facility which offers childcare provision.

Proposals for the park also include the creation of a green environment where roads and paths are tree-lined with green buffers and wildlife corridors. Close to the central hub will be a habitat with ponds, tussock grassland, hedgerows and trees.

The ambition is to create a business community - where employees can enjoy a coffee, drop their children off at childcare and enjoy a lunchtime walk or run in the Great Notley Park.

The project will be funded by a combination of existing reserves, "prudential" borrowing and the sale of serviced plots for development. The scheme will generate significant receipts which will more than offset the cost of the project. The central hub area and proposed enterprise centre will also generate a rental income which will have a positive impact on the Council’s revenue position in the long term. This income will help fund essential services.

Cllr John McKee Cabinet Member for Corporate Transformation at Braintree District Council said: “Our investment into this project will bring new businesses into the area, create quality jobs for local residents and boost our local economy. Our ambition is to create something special - a contemporary, green and future-proofed business park which will become the place to work and to do business now and in the future. We are creating opportunities which will have a positive impact on our communities for many years to come.”

Building work on the roads, at the 65 acre employment site, started in May after the planning framework for the business park was approved in April. This significant step will now allow the Marshgate Group to commence development for occupiers who have been expressing a desire to locate to Horizon 120. The work on these buildings is expected to start at the end of the year for summer 2021 occupation.