Construction on a new £19 million evaluation centre and test track is nearing completion.
The first phase of M-Sport’s centre near Cockermouth saw the design and construction of a 2.5km test track, which included moving 200,000 tonnes of earth.
An approved scheme of woodland management was deployed, protecting certain areas of historic interest, with the planting of trees and grassland to enhance the habitat across the site.
The second and most recent phase involved the construction of a state-of-the-art 111,000ft2 production facility, which began in May 2019.
The building is formed with some 550 tonnes of structural steel, enclosed with 2,000m2 of external wall cladding and 11,000m2 of roof cladding, sat on 18,000m2 of specialist jointless concrete slab, with 1,600 pre-cast concrete panels forming the internal walls.
The showroom in the northeast corner is enclosed with 300m2 of frameless glazing.
Eddie Ward, Northern Development’s commercial manager said, “We have worked in deep collaboration with the client on MEC Project for eleven years, to ensure that we delivered a solution to meet their business needs.
“At the early stages, this involved the building element of the project evolving in numerous forms and growing significantly”.
The facility is considered integral to the future of the Cockermouth-based business. Offering a unique centre of engineering excellence, the M-Sport Evaluation Centre was designed to boost the Cumbrian economy, skills and innovation in the Northern Powerhouse.
It has been said by M-Sport that the creation of the evaluation centre will safeguard existing jobs, and create new skills for the area.
The project has been recognised in the, yet to be announced, North West Regional Construction Awards 2020, as a finalist for sub-regional project of the year for Cumbria.
M-Sport managing director, Malcolm Wilson OBE, said: “I’m extremely proud of what we are creating here at Dovenby Hall, and it’s important that we move forward with an operational facility to attract new business and protect existing jobs as well as new skills in the area.
“These are particularly challenging times for so many businesses, but once the evaluation centre is up and running, I’m confident that we can come out the other side and continue to provide for Cumbria.”