Huawei secures approval for £1bn research centre in Cambridge, UK

WCN Editorial Team 26 Jun 2020 EUROPE BUILDINGS

Chinese telecommunications equipment provider Huawei has secured approval from the Cambridge City Council for the construction of the £1bn optoelectronics research and development (R&D) and manufacturing centre in Cambridge, UK.

The approval follows the completion of over three years of work and planning while the planning application process started in early 2019.

The firm plans to invest £1bn in the first phase of the project, which involves the construction of 50,000m² of facilities.  

Huawei said that the first phase of the project will focus on the research, development, and manufacturing of optical devices and modules. It is expected to create around 400 jobs in the region.

Located at the former Spicers paper mill and production facility that is situated to the west of Sawston, the site includes over 50 acres of brownfield land.

The investment in optoelectronics, which is a key technology used in fibre optic communication systems, is expected to bring advanced technology to data centres and network infrastructure, the Chinese firm noted.

The project will become the international headquarters of Huawei's optoelectronics business, once fully commissioned.

Huawei vice president Victor Zhang said: "The UK is home to a vibrant and open market, as well as some of the best talent the world has to offer.

"It's the perfect location for this integrated innovation campus. Through close collaboration with research institutes, universities, and local industry, we want to advance optical communications technology for the industry as a whole, while doing our part to support the UK's broader Industrial Strategy.

“Ultimately, we want to help enshrine the UK's leading position in optoelectronics and promote UK tech on a global scale."

Rendering of the Huawei’s R&D centre in Cambridge, UK. (Credit: Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd.)

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