Prestwick Scottish Spaceport Gets £80 Million from Ayrshire Growth Deal16th Apr 2021
Ayrshire Growth Deal brings over £80 million for Prestwick spaceport construction and also to boost the surrounding areas economy. Prestwick is one of the two horizontal launch facilities planned in Scotland. Proposed on the basis of an already existing airport with a long and proud history, this facility has what it takes to drive investment and create many new job opportunities.
Prestwick Scottish Spaceport Potential for Growth
Global companies, including Collins Aerospace and BAE Systems, have already created a technological cluster in Ayrshire. Now, the sector is expected to grow even further as the Ayrshire Growth Deal, put forward by the Scottish government, adds £80 million for Scottish spaceport construction. The entire package is £250 million, but almost a third of this is allocated to this spaceport specifically.
According to Mick O’Connor, Prestwick Spaceport Programme Director, the facility has already built a strong reputation and attracted several international companies. Besides, it has strong transport links to other areas, including rail, sea, and road.
The funding secured through the government programme will help to build on the area’s potential. These funds will ensure further development of the aerospace sector and should help create a new technological and innovation hub.
O’Connor claims that the area will also become a visitor attraction, while its focus on STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) will ensure steady development of new skills and technologies.
One more advantage of the upcoming Scottish spaceport is that it will create a stronger connection between Ayrshire and the Scottish research ecosystem. Ayrshire College will build stronger ties with major universities in Scotland.
Furthermore, the growth deal will provide an opportunity to leverage local human talent and drive investment, which will be beneficial not only for the UK’s growing aerospace sector but also to the community in general.
Prestwick Spaceport is estimated to create over 4,000 new job opportunities and such growth should inspire more interest in STEM careers, urging today’s high school students to explore careers in the aerospace sector.
O’Connor claims that most of the future aerospace workforce are currently still at school now, but creating a science and education centre on the basis of an upcoming Scottish spaceport should drive more talented youth to become aerospace engineers.
While no one can predict the youth’s interest in space, one thing is clear: Prestwick Spaceport should become a major boost to the local economy, creating new jobs, driving investment, and building partnerships with both local and international companies.