A bid for £14.2 million of government cash has been submitted to help attract manufacturing and technology investors to South Yorkshire and north Derbyshire.
The Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership wants to use the cash towards £37.5 million worth of improvements to the Sheffield City Region Enterprise Zone, which is part of Derbyshire County Council’s Markham Vale site near Chesterfield.
Those behind the bid believe the improvements will help to unlock more than £80 million worth of private sector investment and create over 2,000 jobs.
The LEP’s bid includes plans to build 180,000 square feet of medium-sized business units to provide ready-made workplaces for international businesses to move straight into.
The project also includes developing large areas of land so big investors can build premises for their businesses more quickly.
In its first year the enterprise zone attracted 15 occupiers and created 228 jobs.
David Grey, LEP board member and chief executive of Sheffield-based manufacturing group OSL Group Holdings Ltd, said: “Every month the LEP inward investment team talks to dozens of investors looking for locations for their businesses.
“They are attracted by the benefits of an Enterprise Zone, including the attractive tax breaks, however, many companies are unable or unwilling to wait for buildings to be built.
“I hope Government will seize this opportunity to satisfy the unmet market need for available modern business premises in the Sheffield city region.”
Coun Joan Dixon, Derbyshire County Council’s cabinet member for jobs, said: “We’re extremely hopeful this will be another exciting development for Derbyshire County Council’s Markham Vale site which continues to grow, despite the current economic challenges we are facing.
Coun Dixon added that the council’s long-term aim was to create 5,000 jobs.