Plans unveiled for Swansea shipping container innovation village

Swansea is already home to several universities and co-working spaces for businesses, but it could be set to get a so-called shipping container ‘box village’.

Plans to build an innovation complex built entirely from shipping containers have been unveiled today, and it’ll house a range of high-tech businesses.

The centre will form a major part of the University of Wales Trinity St David’s ¬£300 million innovation quarter, which will dominate Swansea Bay in the years to come.

This centre will be aimed at connecting high-flying tech businesses, academics, researchers and students to see them share and work on ideas for new firms.

Co-working spaces are a popular way for businesses to innovate and grow right around the world, and there are already many of them in Wales.

When launched, the centre will help launch new businesses, provide existing ones with the support and skills to grow, and encourage investment in Swansea.

Although it could be a while before this concept becomes a reality, the university has already purchased a signiticant part of Swansea’s docklands, and it’s received planning permission.

Professor Medwin Hughes, vice chancellor at the university, said: “Box Village and the Innovation Precinct will enable us to further exploit knowledge and expertise to create new enterprise hubs and high skill accelerator schemes to grow new businesses linked to our portfolio.

“Through such activities, the university will create new opportunities for employment, helping to generate more footfall and spending in the city centre and to retain some of the brightest entrepreneurial talents from within the UWTSD Group in the region.

Rob Stewart, the leader of Swansea Council, said: “The University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s plans for a Box Village are an exciting part of the Swansea Bay City Region’s City Deal bid that would transform the regional economy, open up thousands of jobs and generate the kind of world class digital environment that will allow local entrepreneurs to flourish and expand.

“The Box Village project, based on innovative examples of best practice, will allow flexible space for enterprising businesses to set-up, grow and globalise. Once the components of a Box Village are in place, they really can look particularly striking and impressive.

“This project would complement our plans to develop a digital district on Kingsway and a digital square at the St David’s development site that would include digital artworks and digital projections.”