Legal & General is developing a science and innovation district as part of a £4bn (€4.65bn) partnership with the University of Oxford.

Legal & General said it will fund and deliver the project which extends Oxford’s existing Begbroke Science Park across an adjacent 14-hectare site.

The first phase of the scheme will bring forward new teaching facilities for the university’s mathematical, physical and life sciences departments. Future phases will also seek to develop 2,000 new homes, with a mix of affordable tenures and subsidised key worker accommodation.

Nigel Wilson, CEO at Legal & General, said: “We are extremely proud of our partnership with the University of Oxford, which in the wake of COVID-19 will help retain talent in the city, whilst driving essential inward investment and providing opportunities for world-leading innovation, as well as much needed housing for key workers.

“Investments such as this are creating virtuous cycle whereby pensions and savings are used to create positive social, environmental and economic outcomes which are in line with our commitment to inclusive capitalism.”

Laura Mason, CEO of Legal & General Capital, said: “As we have seen over the last two years, the life sciences and health sectors have never been more important, and new schemes like Begbroke will help the UK continue to lead the way and ensure future health emergencies can become just health events.

“UK universities are world-leading and we are helping realise their potential by investing in much-needed science infrastructure, which can incubate the great talent and innovative spin-outs which come from these first-class institutions.”

David Prout, pro-vice chancellor at the University of Oxford, said: “We are delighted that this project is going ahead as part of our JV partnership with Legal and General. It will provide much needed expansion space for academic research and also for University spinouts and commercial collaborators.”

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