'Significant progress' on Sanofi site funding

By Jim Dunton - Wed 8 May 2013, 2:59 pm

Lobbying work to help fund the key research-and-manufacturing element of the redevelopment of Dagenham's 43ha Sanofi site is advancing well, the company said.

Sanofi: talks with GLA over funding

Pharmaceutical giant Sanofi is set to cease manufacturing at the Rainham Road facility in the coming weeks, but has drawn up detailed legacy plans for its site - rebranded “business-east” - including maintaining core state-of-the-art facilities as a science and technology park called BEST.

Mark Bass, Sanofi’s land development and partnership leader for Dagenham, told a residents’ meeting last week that funding talks with the Greater London Authority’s London Enterprise Panel were making “significant progress”. (BOLD magazine reported in December that a bid for £12 million in funding from the panel for the scheme had been launched.)

Bass added that the company was also in “advanced talks” with a major American IT company over proposals to build a massive data centre on around 10 hectares of  the site.

“It is the end of an era, but what we hope to be doing here is to usher in a new era for the site with even more people working here than in the last days of Sanofi,” he said.

In addition to the industrial proposals for the site, 450 jobs are to be created with construction of a Sainsbury’s supermarket and petrol station.

Once Sanofi leaves,  21 hectares of green-belt land at the site will be handed over to a charitable trust to ensure the continuance of facilites for the May & Baker Social Club.

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