Scottish Spaceport Costs Rising

Space Hub Sutherland spaceport. (Credit: HIE)

Scotland’s audit agency say that costs are rising for the high-risk Space Hub Sutherland project that is designed to give the United Kingdom its first spaceport for vertical launches.

“Recent indications are that the costs of the project are increasing, and it is not yet clear how these will be funded,” Audit Scotland said in its annual audit of Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HEI), which is leading the effort.

“HIE recognises this project is high risk and is in active discussions with key stakeholders including Scottish Government and the United Kingdom Space Agency,” the audit added.

The report said that HEI is making significant progress on the costly project.

The initial funding package for this project is £17.3 million with HIE’s contribution being £9.8 million. Design work and scoping for environmental impact studies are well underway and HIE recently signed an option for it to lease land once planning consent for the project has been granted.

HIE has begun public consultations on the project.