Climate crisis: plans for £70 million Sheffield facility to play ‘major role’ in reaching net zero

ITM Power has revealed plans for a new Sheffield facility that would play a ‘major role’ in tackling the climate crisis and create 500 jobs.

Tuesday, 5th April 2022, 4:40 pm
Updated Tuesday, 5th April 2022, 4:47 pm

If approved by Sheffield Council, the advanced manufacturing and testing facility would be built on land off Letsby Avenue, Tinsley, in the University of Sheffield’s innovation district where Sheffield City Airport used to be.

Overall investment is estimated to be around £70 million and it would create 500 new permanent jobs as well as temporary employment during construction.

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Artist's impression of what the new ITM Power facility would look like in the University of Sheffield innovation district.

Construction is expected to start in July and the aim is to have it operational by November 2023.

The Gigafactory would manufacture electrolysers that split water into molecules of hydrogen and oxygen using renewable power. The resultant hydrogen will then be used to decarbonise industrial processes, transport and heating.

This second ITM factory would provide the “template” for the company’s first international facility and complement its current facility at the nearby Bessemer Park.

DLP Planning, the agent for the development, said: “This will be an important development for the city, the advanced manufacturing and innovation district as well as being entirely in accordance with local plan policies.

Artist's impression of what the new ITM Power facility would look like in the University of Sheffield innovation district.

“It clearly constitutes sustainable development in terms of investing in ‘clean growth’ as one of the sectors where Britain can become a global leader in driving innovation. Hydrogen is itself a rapidly growing field within the renewable energy sector and is key to the clean growth of many other industries.

“Significant weight should be given to the benefits of this proposal which will also see significant job creation in the high skilled advanced manufacturing and research sector as well as redevelopment of a derelict, brownfield site.”

The site would include 347 parking spaces for staff and visitors. Of those, 34 would be electric vehicle spaces, 17 accessible spaces and 10 motorcycle spaces.

Artist's impression of what the new ITM Power facility would look like in the University of Sheffield innovation district.

There would also be a cycle shelter with storage for up to 52 bikes.

So far there are no comments from members of the public on the plans.