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A 2.4Bn Development, Never Used....

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Semiconductors were meant to be the saviour of Scottish industry - we were told not to worry too much about the death of heavy industry because the future was in high-tech. Politicians had great fun talking about Silicon Glen, boasting about all the electronics companies who were setting up factories in Scotland, and not mentioning the huge government subsidies offered to these companies.

My emphasis.....

Hyundai semiconductor plant, Dunfermline

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http://www.heraldscotland.com/new-dawn-or-new-white-elephant-1.860969

6 Jul 2007

It was a Silicon Glen flagship. But with the demolition of the old Chunghwa picture tubes factory, is time also ticking for Eurocentral, asks Gerry Braiden

The wrong building in the wrong place'. In a rough translation from diplomatic speak, this means a hugely expensive white elephant, propped up in part with public cash and dominating a supposedly mixed-use development, before which the occupants fled elsewhere when the going got tough and a cheaper location emerged.

Yesterday, almost five years on since the last employees downed tools, the demolition of the former Chunghwa picture tubes factory at Eurocentral in Lanarkshire began.

This hammered the final, rusting nail into the coffin of Scotland's dream of a Caledonian Silicon Valley'.

When it opened in 1996, to manufacture cathode ray tube computer monitors and televisions, the Taiwanese firm promised 3000 jobs.

More than that, it represented a bright, clean future for an area just beginning to wipe away the stain of more than a century of heavy industry, something acknowledged by the Queen and Donald Dewar when they officially opened it the following year.

Instead, the workforce peaked at 1200 and, by the time the plant shut, it had only 600 staff left.

Since then, Chunghwa's empty shell has dominated Eurocentral - 350,000sq ft of collapsed hi-tech industry welcoming thousands of people every day and standing as a symbol of the end of the dream of creating large-scale, high-skilled centres of manufacturing excellence across the central belt.

Along with the massive job losses at Motorola in Bathgate, NEC in Living- ston and Hewlett Packard in Erskine, it marked the end of an era in terms of the Scottish Executive's inward investment strategy.

In its place will be a new £300m office, warehousing and manufacturing base.

This will represent the largest, speculative business development of its kind in Scotland - all with easy access to the M8 and M74.

According to the team behind the venture, Tritax Assets Ltd, it also has the potential to create more than 5000 jobs. Tritax director Ian Ross also admitted that the new development is also one of the largest, speculative business space projects ever undertaken in the UK.

He added: "When we purchased the former Chunghwa building we had identified the opportunity to make the transition from a redundant single-user site to a mixed-use business park.

"In terms of our plans for Eurocentral, it was the wrong building in the wrong place and it will be replaced with 10 new office buildings, four new warehousing and manufacturing units and a range of ancillary developments including restaurant, crèche and gym facilities."

But is this the next phase in an evolving enterprise culture or an indication Eurocentral has flopped - itself a white elephant with only the faintest success to trumpet?

Will the much-lauded Ravenscraig development in nearby Motherwell be more of the same?

Seems money well spent.

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Guest sillybear2

Any use for fabricating PV solar cells?

That said companies quite happily abandon capital investment if it means near instant returns in savings in labour, energy, transport and environmental costs.

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Any use for fabricating PV solar cells?

That said companies quite happily abandon capital investment if it means near instant returns in savings in labour, energy, transport and environmental costs.

They could be converted, but I suspect it wouldn't be cost effective.

Plus most PV R&D seems to be aiming towards printing / deposition onto polymer substrates now as far as I can tell.

If it takes off the demand for silicon based PV would fall off a cliff.

[Mods.. feel free to Off-topic]

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£2.4bn

I assumed that was a typo by Corevalue.

Unbelievable.

It would be far cheaper giving the money to local people with a good business idea and support them fully for 5 years (+ building small industrial/office unit developments for them to use)

£2.5 Billion - how many people in Scotland would that have supported and this is only ONE of hundreds of global company subsidy rip-offs we have seen over the past few decades!

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Any use for fabricating PV solar cells?

That said companies quite happily abandon capital investment if it means near instant returns in savings in labour, energy, transport and environmental costs.

Funny you should say that....

Solar firm eyes Hyundai factory

An American company is in advanced talks with the Scottish Government over buying a redundant factory in Fife.

California-based Zoom Diversified is interested in the former Hyundai plant in Dunfermline, which has lain empty since it was built in the 1990s.

The firm is understood to be planning to make domestic solar panels at the site, creating about 600 jobs.

Now have a look at Zoom Diversified.....

Not exactly professional.....

Is there any way of finding out how much public money has disappeared into this pit?

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Guest sillybear2

They could be converted, but I suspect it wouldn't be cost effective.

Plus most PV R&D seems to be aiming towards printing / deposition onto polymer substrates now as far as I can tell.

If it takes off the demand for silicon based PV would fall off a cliff.

[Mods.. feel free to Off-topic]

Looks like it is (was) considered for crystalline PV by the new owners :-

http://www.dunfermlinepress.com/articles/1/26593/

edit: yeah, as above.

Google Maps

Edited by sillybear2

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Looks like it is (was) considered for crystalline PV by the new owners :-

http://www.dunfermlinepress.com/articles/1/26593/

Maybe I spoke too soon (or perhaps they came to the same conclusion).

Some UK based fabs are doing a roaring trade ATM (I think off the back of the LED market). Perhaps one of them could eventually buy them up.

Also, I think the major problem is that all of the serious tooling usually gets sold off pretty quick (usually to the other UK fabs who use it to upgrade existing lines), so although the infrastructure looks impressive, if they have already lost the etchers / CVD furnaces / wafer prep and inspection tools, pumping systems etc etc.. the outlay to get the place up and running again would be huge.

[Edit to add: yes, they have. Look at the clean room.. it's been completely gutted]

Edited by libspero

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Guest sillybear2

Maybe I spoke too soon (or perhaps they came to the same conclusion).

Some UK based fabs are doing a roaring trade ATM (I think off the back of the LED market). Perhaps one of them could eventually buy them up.

Also, I think the major problem is that all of the serious tooling usually gets sold off pretty quick (usually to the other UK fabs who use it to upgrade existing lines), so although the infrastructure looks impressive, if they have already lost the etchers / CVD furnaces / wafer prep and inspection tools, pumping systems etc etc.. the outlay to get the place up and running again would be huge.

Looks like it was designed before1997 and dumped during the later Asia crisis, would it still be up to latest environmental specs? What's with the huge settling tanks?

Edited by sillybear2

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Looks like it was designed before1997 and dumped during the later Asia crisis, would it still be up to latest environmental specs? What's with the huge settling tanks?

Looking at the history, it was first dumped in 1999.. so probably dotcom bubble related.

I guess whatever Freescale did with it they couldn't make it productive enough despite having bought it at a fraction of the original cost.

I don't see why it couldn't meet environmental specs (it's still pretty modern compared to some other fabs), but I expect the largest cost would be in purchasing all the tooling and equipment to get it running again.

As for the settling tanks.. I don't know TBH.

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Guest sillybear2

Looking at the history, it was first dumped in 1999.. so probably dotcom bubble related.

I guess whatever Freescale did with it they couldn't make it productive enough despite having bought it at a fraction of the original cost.

I don't see why it couldn't meet environmental specs (it's still pretty modern compared to some other fabs), but I expect the largest cost would be in purchasing all the tooling and equipment to get it running again.

As for the settling tanks.. I don't know TBH.

I read it was mothballed in June 1998, following the '97 Asia crisis. Did Freescale ever do anything? Apparently not even a single wafer ever came out of there. Remember Freescale has been closing other (active) plants in Scotland following their disastrous over-leveraged private equity buy out in 2006.

They should just change their name to something banking related, then they could benefit from unlimited BoE funds.

Edited by sillybear2

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  • 142 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
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      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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