Westpark Innovation Campus: a blueprint for the workplace community

Shannon’s thriving Westpark Innovation Campus is a hub for innovative aviation, logistics, tech and finance firms. There’s now 55,000 sq ft of prime office space overlooking Shannon Airport available on site, writes Fine Grain Property Head of Client Relations Kevin Conlon. 

The words workplace and community may not seem like obvious bedfellows. In the past, they were about as similar as chalk and cheese. You’d leave your community every morning to go to a designated desk in an office and return in the evening. Never the twain would meet.  

Not anymore. At Fine Grain Property, we’ve been developing a thriving workplace community in business parks across Ireland since 2016. Our workplace community is built around a central concept: that people work better together in spaces that encourage collaboration, creativity and interaction. In turn, this builds success for the companies that employ them.  

A prime example of a thriving workplace community is Shannon’s Westpark Innovation Campus. In June 2022, we consolidated our ownership of this 40-acre site, which encompasses more than 300,000 sq ft of modern office space, when we acquired the five-storey Building 7000 from owner/occupier AXA, the global insurance company, in a sale & leaseback deal.  

This means that we can apply our expertise across all of Westpark and frees AXA from the pressures of property ownership, allowing the company to focus on its business while maintaining continuity for their team. Meanwhile, we can create more opportunities for Westpark’s resident companies and their employees to interact, innovate and grow.  

Our ownership of Building 7000 means that we now have 55,000 sq ft of quality office space available to prospective clients that would like to become part of the Westpark workplace community. The space offers all the amenities and atmosphere that successful companies have come to expect of Fine Grain Property, along with impressive views over neighbouring Shannon Airport and the Shannon Free Zone.  

Thanks to its proximity to Shannon Airport, Westpark has become a hub for specialist aviation businesses. Due to the fast-moving nature of this sector (literally and figuratively!) we continuously work in partnership with our clients to respond to their evolving needs.  

In this past year, we've facilitated growth for a number of our aviation clients while also welcoming aviation companies Nova Systems, AerAdvise and Six West to Westpark. But it’s not just aviation companies that have made their homes at Westpark. Great connections to the universities at Limerick and Galway have contributed to the formation of clusters of technology, logistics and financial services firms settling at Westpark. 

All this illustrates a key facet of our workplace community: the creation of clusters of clients who specialise in the same or adjacent industries and often provide goods and services for each other. The result is a vibrant community of like-minded companies that mix, do business and socialise in the campus’s shared spaces, two restaurants and landscaped gardens and beyond. 

We’re investing in amenities to ensure the sustained success of the Westpark campus and the wider community that surrounds it as well. These include the installation of EV charging points and e-bike hire stations and projects to boost biodiversity and capture carbon by planting more trees in our grounds. Solar panels and other sustainable technologies are also on the cards as we continue our journey towards net zero.  

We haven’t developed Westpark and our other properties as embodiments of the dictionary definition of community – sharing common attitudes and interests – purely out of some sense of civic duty, of course. It makes commercial sense too. By providing pleasant, open spaces for our clients, we are helping them attract and retain talent and succeed as enterprises. This, ultimately, delivers returns for our investors and ensures the success of our business.   

kevin-conlonTo discuss joining the community at Westpark Innovation Campus, get in touch by emailing me at kevin.conlon@finegrainproperty.com 

 

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