Dome Project Management

Case Study - NETPark, Clear Futures

Dome is providing bespoke project management services to Clear Futures, becoming embedded within the Clear Futures organisation and adapting our services to the demands of the project and governance arrangements in place.

Case study Details

Clear Futures : NETPark (Phase 3A)

Project Overview

NETPark (North East Technology Park) is owned by Durham County Council and having been established since 2004, is the region’s only science park. It consists of a range of properties for early stage and growing science and technology businesses and is currently home to 40 companies, employing over 600 staff specialising in fields such as nanotechnology, X-Ray technology, forensics and semiconductor technology.

NETPark has a vision to become a global hub for science and technology companies. The Park has strategic focus on supporting companies to integrate materials into innovative, high value products with enormous social and economic impact. These products help us to be healthier, generate sustainable energy, keep us safe and secure in the world and transform the lives of those
around us. To achieve this ambition, NETPark proposes to create additional buildings through the next phase of development (known as Phase 3A) of the park.

Clear Futures are providing strategic support and partnering services to the Council to deliver the next phase of development at the Park. The development will provide an attractive and unique
working environment, placing a firm emphasis on staff wellbeing, including access to open green space and fresh air whilst encouraging physical activity and social connections across the wider site. The site will be designed to be attractive to walk and cycle around, with breakout areas and rest points to encourage interaction. The quality of both the buildings and the public realm is a key consideration.

A large proportion of the current tenants have expressed a strong desire to remain on site, but require additional, flexible space as their businesses grow. Many of them require large elements of storage, in addition to high quality laboratory and office space. It is imperative that the units aredeveloped to remain as flexible and adaptable as possible, encouraging a variety of building uses
and future alteration and expansion.

Sustainability is a key project deliverable. Whilst it is critical that the masterplan is in accordance with Durham County Council’s future policies, a well-considered sustainability strategy will also help retain and attract tenants to NETPark. In 2019, Durham County Council declared a climate change emergency. The design team has therefore considered options on how to achieve net zero carbon, following the UK Green Building (UKGBC) guidance.

Services and Value Added

Dome has provided bespoke project management services to Clear Futures, becoming embedded within the Clear Futures organisation and adapting our services to the demands of the project and
governance arrangements in place.

We have provided project management services at all pre-construction stages and will continue to deliver project management services during construction and handover phases. We have supported Clear Futures and the Council in several areas: project governance; design team management; procurement advice; risk management; programme advice; and value engineering.

During the tendering period for the project in early 2022, the construction market was in a precarious position due to a range of wider economic and political factors, and as such, careful consideration was given to the procurement and tendering strategy, whilst at the same time utilising an established public sector procurement framework. We provided advice and support to Clear Futures and the Council to develop a robust process for a two-stage tendering strategy, which included a soft market testing process and the hosting of a market engagement event.

We have subsequently worked closely with Kier Construction who were appointed as main contractor, this process has seen a range of design options be considered and assessed to be able to deliver the project within the approved budget. This process was successfully concluded in March 2023. Works are due to commence on site in July 2023, with completion scheduled for February 2025.


“Ross has provided, and continues to provide, Clear Futures with bespoke project management services to develop our proposals for the next phase of development at NETPark.  Ross has fitted seamlessly into the Clear Futures operating model and developed strong working relationships with the Clear Futures delivery team and the wider client team, including Durham County Council.  The support provided by Ross is highly valued by Clear Futures.”

Richard Airey – Partnership & Operations Lead, Clear Futures