Business is migrating to Adelaide’s latest hot spot Edinburgh Parks.

Scott Hicks was featured in the Advertiser during August 2016 for an article “Shining a light on northern Adelaide Industry”. The complete article from The Advertiser is below:


THE apocalypse hadn’t quite come but two years ago the mood in industrial, northern Adelaide was distinctly downbeat.

The confirmation of the pending closure of GM Holden blared out a message that manufacturing, fuelled by the local automotive collapse, was on its last legs, the knock-on effect terminal to second, third and fourth tier car industry suppliers.

Astonishingly perhaps, the landscape is different today.

More than 250 manufacturing jobs, created primarily through new business wins, have been created in Edinburgh Parks, the high tech industrial precinct at the heart of the reinvigorated, and now once more, northern growth zone.

This week, timber and hardware merchant Footersville announced it will move from its 4.3 hectare Regency Park premises to a 5.1 hectare site in Edinburgh Parks at the end of next year. A major waste unit manufacturer is expected to announce details of a relocation there shortly.

“In the last two years in Edinburgh Parks there have been eight businesses taking up more than 16.4 hectares, there,” said senior economic adviser Ben Kirchner from the City of Salisbury council.

“Many businesses are realising the great value industrial property represents at Edinburgh Parks and this is supporting a smooth transition away from automotive activity.”

Indeed adapting a former automotive sites is an easy way in, with data storage company YourDC taking over the Walker Tenneco premises and Mayfield Industries reshaping the Dair industries car dealership premises.

Believing is key said Mr Kirchner.

“The recent purchases of ex-automotive sites confirms many of the advantages business see in the area, which provides a sense of confidence. The area continues to create jobs while sustainably transforming the region’s industrial base over the long term.”
Myriad businesses have made the move to Edinburgh Parks of late including Mayfield, who provide transportable switchrooms and switchboard solutions, Tilling (timber) while Infuse Bottling Company is in the process of building a facility there. There are now 41 businesses in situ.

Data storage experts YourDC launched there in May with the goal of pumping $800 million of cloud data services into the state economy said MD Scott Hicks. Its $30 million, 6,500 sqm facility is designed to provide the highest levels of defence-grade security, disaster recovery and connectivity available in SA.

“The site was chosen because it offered existing infrastructure in a strategic location that could be relatively easily adapted,” Mr Hicks said. “It offers geographic diversity, very low risk of flooding and other natural disasters, easy access to power and the ability to grow.”

Its nine staff are set to grow in line with customer growth he said and the company is close to securing several new contracts said Mr Hicks.

The uplift would not have happened though without a vastly improved infrastructure. The $1 billion Northern Connector, currently under construction, promises to greatly reduce transport times and will be further complemented by the South Road upgrades, expected to be done by 2019/20. Plus electrified rail services says the government at some point.

The basics were was already there argues Mr Kircher, the infrastructure more a value adder. Mark Footer, managing director of incomers Footersville, who supply domestic and commercial building markets, takes another tack.

“We are a logistics company as much as a manufacturing company, we do deliveries all over Adelaide. Nobody comes to us for products,” he said.

“The infrastructure upgrade means Edinburgh Parks will become as Regency Park is now.”

A ready made labour market had proved pivotal — northern Adelaide has SA’s fastest growing population said Mr Kirchner.

Salisbury mayor Gillian Aldridge said confidence is growing locally as more people recognise growth opportunities in food processing (Coles distribution centre is Edinburgh Parks based), logistics, recycling, advanced manufacturing, defence, water and education.

“The Northern Economic Plan is helping to shape the future of the north and it’s important we maximise the benefits and opportunities presented by developments including the Northern Connector, the food park at Parafield Airport, electrification of the Gawler rail line, the Futures submarines and frigates projects and the Salisbury city centre renewal,” she said.

Infrastructure counts but the price has to be right — the significant supply of affordable development ready land comes at a third of the cost of land at Wingfield.

“What we are seeing at Edinburgh Parks is an affordable way to grow our business,” Mark Footer said. “Doing that at Regency Park would have meant a lot of disruption, it’s difficult to maintain a business while you are doing that. Now we can develop a superior facility and simply move in over two or three weeks. It’s cost prohibitive to develop where we are.”

Functional obsolesce, a growing constraint in ageing industrial stock, is playing its part said David Reid, industrial director with property group CBRE.

“We are seeing some positive migration trends to Edinburgh Parks away from the traditional north west industrial corridor,” Mr Reid said.

“The new road networks will add further attraction significantly reducing the friction of distance with non-stop freeway corridors connecting greater Edinburgh with the inner metropolitan suburbs,” he said. “Affordable development land, improved access and a lack of quality stock should auger well for renewed interest in construction activity in the industrial sector.”

JLL industrial services director, Kym Hutchins, points to similarities with the re-gentrification of residential land.

“Companies are being forced by economics to relocate, it’s more affordable and appropriate to their use with open areas of land and where outside storage is still needed,” he said.

It’s not just Edinburgh Parks that stands to win, nearby food and technology parks will benefit too.

“Land is cheaper than at Wingfield. It’s the same principle as when Regency Park first started. The greater metropolitan area has expanded and the next area that can provide affordable land will be Edinburgh Parks. You are not paying the same taxes or high rates so can afford to have larger storage. A lot of it is for transport groups that need storage.”

Recycling is looking to play a pivotal role. The Northern Area Waste Management Authority recently bought an ex automotive site on Woomera Ave and plans to build an all enclosed, contemporary waste recycling facility.

There is some neighbourhood disquiet over the category two planning application which is expected to be approved next month, the fit incongruous perhaps amid a high tech set of new residents.

But for now Edinburgh Parks is forging ahead. If you’re innovative and good, you’re in.

Source Article – TheAdvertiser