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Blackburn Business Innovation District


Blackburn Business Innovation District

The Business Innovation District is key to the delivery of a £250m investment framework for Blackburn Town Centre, the largest development of its kind in the North West. 

Centred on the regeneration of the former Thwaites Brewery and council sites, it’s part of the ambitious Blackburn Growth Axis plan which will deliver £1bn of new economic activity in the borough over the next ten years. 

Proposals for the BID include a Skills and Education Campus and Cyber Zone of national significance – backed by £20m of Government funding. The site closely links to the Samlesbury Enterprise Zone too (see pages 18-19) – making Blackburn an integral part of the Government’s proposed Northern Cyber Corridor between Lancaster and Manchester. 

It further connects new growth opportunities generated by business clusters and HQ developments anchored by global companies such as Euro Garages and Assystem. A major health innovation investment at Royal Blackburn Hospital, including a new medi-park located near to the M65 Industrial Growth Corridor, will further enhance the scheme. 

The Blackburn Business Innovation District is part of Blackburn’s wider Town Centre Masterplan. 

Other Masterplan elements include: 

  • Business and technology workspaces for low carbon, green and renewable industries 
  • Low carbon town centre accommodation adjacent to retail, local services and flexible workspaces 
  • Revitalised/repurposed historic buildings 
  • Improved public realm 
  • Increased cycle/pedestrian routes 
  • Improved access to local canal infrastructure 
  • Town Centre wide 5G roll-out

Site details

Size of site: 15 acres 

Location: Blackburn Town Centre, BB1 6AF 

Connectivity: 100m from new bus interchange 

500m from Blackburn Rail Station 

ten minute drive from Junction 5 M65 

Scheme value: £250m GDV 

Planning status: Masterplan consulted on as part of the Council’s new Local Plan (to be adopted by Dec 2023) 

Promoter: All land under Blackburn with Darwen Council and Joint Venture ownership or control (Council Joint Venture Delivery with Maple Grove Developments)

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