Safran Landing Systems UK (Formally known as “Dowty’s”), is setting its sights on the future, as the highly anticipated construction begins of a New Technology Centre positioned on the main road.
The aerospace world leader has been a prominent feature along Cheltenham Road East since before World War Two and it’s already striking road-side presence is set to change imminently.
It is the two-storey white rendered section, originally built in the 1930’s, on the junction with Down Hatherley Lane, that is being demolished to make way for the brand new Technology Centre comprising mainly of engineering design and product support offices.
The ‘Engineering block’ as it’s been fondly known since the nineties, has been the design birthplace of dozens of civil and military aircraft, including the Airbus family.
The new three-storey building, designed by local architects Robert Limbricks and project managed by E G Carters & Co Ltd, will infuse modern architecture with a nod to the site’s rich aerospace history, with aspirations to include an open-plan atrium displaying landing gear, both past, present and future. The new building will house and inspire over 300 highly qualified staff.
The New Technology Centre is set to contribute to Safran’s mission to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050. To achieve this, Safran Group has pledged to reduce carbon emissions from its production and office facilities globally by 30% by 2025. Specifically, the Gloucester site has seen a 28% reduction in both gas and electricity consumption since 2018.
The new building will be carbon neutral with the use of solar panels and improved insulation using recycled heat from the adjacent Heat Treatment facility.
To make way for this fresh, dynamic and environmentally conscious working environment, a ceremony took place on Monday 3rd July, hosted by Safran Landing Systems Managing Director, Nigel Woodford and building contractor E G Carter and Co Ltd. Local MPs Laurence Robertson and Richard Graham attended with apprentices and graduates, who are set to fully benefit from the modernisation, and employees, some of whom have worked loyally at Safran in the offices for 40 years or more.
Nigel Woodford, Managing Director of Safran Landing Systems Gloucester, who started his career as an Apprentice in the Dowty Rotol design office, sums up this exciting new era for the Company. ‘It was a pleasure to host Laurence Robertson and Richard Graham on site today, both of whom are supporters of our site and the contribution we make to engineering locally. Safran Landing Systems in Gloucester are investing in the future, the environment, in our people, products and infrastructure to maintain the leading position we have today.’
Thomas Jones, Associate Director at E G Carter adds; “We have already built up a great relationship with the Safran team and were therefore delighted to have been successful with the bid for the construction of the New Technology Centre. Collaborative working, teamwork and honesty, the key principles of E G Carter, will enable us to deliver such a fantastic looking, sustainable facility”.
The new façade of Safran Landing Systems is part of a larger site improvement plan, as those readers with a keen eye will have noticed a missing building at the centre of the huge Safran site. The future is looking bright for the Safran site as the investment helps to inspire current and future generations into this world-leading aerospace company in Gloucester.