23/09/2010 - 00:00

Cox Howlett gets nod for Malaysia

23/09/2010 - 00:00

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A PERTH-based architecture firm has been commissioned to prepare a master plan for a custom-built biotechnology industrial precinct in Malaysia.

Cox Howlett gets nod for Malaysia

A PERTH-based architecture firm has been commissioned to prepare a master plan for a custom-built biotechnology industrial precinct in Malaysia.

Cox Howlett & Bailey Woodland beat 11 rival international architecture firms for the rights to develop the $20 million first phase of the 40 hectare development, BioXcell Ecosystem Industrial Park, a Malaysian government initiative to develop stronger downstream industrial spinoffs from some of their primary industrial activities.

The industrial park, located in the Nusa Jaya region of Malaysia, is a joint venture between Cox Howlett, Kuala Lumpur-based FAA Arkitekts and Malaysian firms BioCorp and UEM Land.

“There has been a fair period of planning from the government over there to look at how they could best establish a strong new industrial base in that area,” Cox Howlett & Bailey Woodland director Fred Chaney told WA Business News.

“It’s quite an interesting concept when it comes to the development of industrial parks or research parks, particularly in relation to the industrial park.

“It’s really a hybrid of an industrial park and what’s occurred in research and development parks over the last 20 years. It’s trying to take the best of R&D park concepts and apply that to an industrial facility or an industrial park.

“The concept behind it is that there is an activity hub which includes a central administrative hub, shared laboratory facilities and shared testing facilities, which will be provided to long-term tenants in the park, but its also to create a place where people can meet and interact in the park.”

Mr Chaney said the project was an exciting proposal that could shape the future development of industrial and research precincts around the world.

“It’s really about trying to set up an alignment of government policy initiatives and investment in existing industrial and commercial activity,” he said.

“The idea of the ecosystem is that there is a series of natural organic relationships.

“What the Malaysian government is trying to do is establish an industrial hub, and one that will become significant for their country in strategic terms.

“It comes back to that ecosystem concept, its one that has been grown out of an existing industrial strength.

“They are saying they have serious activity in this particular area, and they are seeing how they can add value and how can we attract internationals as well to be part of that.”

Cox Howlett has had a presence in Malaysia for the past ten years, a factor Mr Chaney said was important when considering why the firm won the rights to develop the project.

“We’ve got strong background and experience in research and development generally, so that’s an area that we have some good expertise in,” Mr Chaney said.

“Also our local Malaysian partners obviously had a strong reputation in the marketplace and it was undoubtedly a combination which secured the project.”

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