A property programme which will create more than 1,000 new jobs in Fife has started construction on its first project.
Fife Council has announced work has started on seven single storey business units in Kirkcaldy designed to provide small business space to local enterprises with growth ambitions.
The development, taking place on land to the east of Midfield Drive, within Dunnikier Business Park, is scheduled for completion in the autumn of 2021.
The project is part of the Fife Industrial Innovation Investment (i3) programme, which will deliver new buildings and serviced sites across Mid and South Fife.
It will support the creation of 1,000 new skilled permanent jobs and almost 600 short-term construction jobs.
It also aims to attract around £30 million in private sector investment. This will be facilitated by joint working between the region’s universities, Fife businesses and Fife Council to deliver high value jobs.
The programme is part of the £1.3 billion Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal, a partnership of local authorities, universities and colleges, and the Scottish and UK Governments to deliver a 15-year programme that will transform the regional economy.
Neil Crooks, convener of Kirkcaldy Area Committee at Fife Council: “I am pleased Kirkcaldy is one of the first towns in Fife to benefit from investment from the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal.
“Our focus in Fife is firmly on fairer economic growth, where everyone benefits from good employment opportunities.
“I’m looking forward to seeing tenants getting in and getting going when these units are finished next autumn.
“That’s what this investment is really about, supporting growing businesses that can invest in their workforce to create and sustain good jobs.
“The properties themselves are being built with future challenges and opportunities in mind, so the companies locating here will have premises that can adapt with their business model.”
The Fife Industrial Innovation Investment programme will be delivered in three phases.
Phase one, which runs until March 2022, includes projects Glenrothes, Kirkcaldy, Lochgelly, Dunfermline and Dalgety Bay and will deliver a mix of completed buildings to let and serviced land available for immediate investment by new or existing businesses.
Altany Craik, convener of Economy, Tourism. Strategic Planning and Transportation Committee at Fife Council, added: “This project is the first visible sign in Kirkcaldy of the positive changes that the City Region Deal will bring to Fife.
“Through the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal regional partners will secure more than £1.3 billion of investment for the city region over the next 15 years. We believe that this can create clear opportunities for genuine inclusive economic growth and investment in Fife.
“The Deal focuses on growing the regional economy through collaboration and by being outward-looking, building on the region’s existing strengths in key sectors and industries. Our Fife Industrial Innovation Investment programme will increase the supply of serviced employment land and new industrial, office and business space in Fife.
“Through the wider City Region Deal Fife businesses will have increased opportunities to build-on the value they generate from their data by adopting digital technologies, and use this to create new products, and generate both new supply chain arrangements and new business models – creating and safeguarding jobs.”