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£50m innovation centre on Newcastle Helix site is completed

A £50m building poised to put Newcastle at the forefront of ageing and data innovation has been officially completed.

The Catalyst at Newcastle Helix has been developed to act as a city centre focus, stimulating economic growth and job creation in ageing and data-related innovation.

The building, which forms part of the £350m Newcastle Helix development, will now open its doors, bringing together businesses, communities and world-class innovation experts and translational researchers.

The landmark building hosts a suite of bespoke facilities and a range of office space.

It will be home to the National Innovation Centre for Data (NICD) and the UK’s National Innovation Centre for Ageing (NICA), both of which are hosted and funded by Newcastle University in partnership with UK Research & Innovation.

Prof Brian Walker, pro-vice-chancellor for research strategy and resources at Newcastle University, said: “We are excited to see staff now occupying the Catalyst as a bespoke building bringing together businesses, innovation experts, translational researchers and the public, all under one roof.

“Together, we will deliver economic growth and enable the UK to become a global leader in data and ageing-related innovation.”

The Catalyst is being managed by Oxford Innovation, the UK’s leading operator of innovation spaces which specialises in building business communities.

Oxford Innovation’s managing director Jo Stevens said: “We’re thrilled to be working with Newcastle University to launch what will be a magnificent facility for Newcastle and the UK, bolstering the city’s credentials as a leader, delivering meaningful and visible innovation in data and ageing.

“The centre is a fantastic opportunity and will encourage companies and organisations to collaborate, develop and build a broad range of new products which will focus on data and ageing.”

Spread over five floors, the 100,000sqft National Innovation Centre for Data will connect the brightest technologists with businesses, helping them to unlock the benefits of data science.

As well as offices and breakout spaces, it has a meeting spaces including a TED Talk-style theatre and a Team Decision Theatre with interactive screens.

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