(Sharecast News) – Primary care property investor and developer Assura announced the official start of construction on an £11m ambulance hub in Bury St Edmunds on Monday.
The FTSE 250 company said the hub would be let to the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) on a 30-year lease, with three-yearly rent reviews linked to the retail price index (RPI).
Covering an area of 2,900 square metres, it said the facility would serve as a crucial ‘make-ready’ central reporting hub for emergency services.
It would also include space for training facilities and provide housing for 33 ambulances.
EEAST is one of England’s largest ambulance trusts, responsible for covering 7,500 square miles and serving more than 6.3 million people, Assura noted.
It said a key focus of the project would be environmental sustainability, explaining that in line with the recent launch of its ‘Net Zero Carbon Design Guide’ and its aspiration to achieve net zero carbon across the entire portfolio by 2040, the ambulance hub was being designed with a net zero carbon operation in mind.
Construction was projected to span 14 months, with rent payments scheduled to start in the third quarter of 2024.
“This fantastic project in Bury St Edmunds will help the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust to deliver an efficient and essential service to the local population,” said chief executive officer Jonathan Murphy.
“Building on the success of our first Ambulance Hub in the West Midlands, this £11m development scheme is another step in our strategic expansion into emerging opportunities – working directly with NHS Trusts to provide facilities in a community setting that help alleviate pressure on hospitals and the NHS.
“Using our Net Zero Carbon Design Guide, we are aiming for the site to be net zero carbon in operation – with all energy used at the site generated by on site renewable energy in the form of over 1,000 square metres of photovoltaic panels.”
At 0814 BST, shares in Assura were down 0.16% at 48.9p.
Reporting by Josh White for Sharecast.com.