SEVILLA has been announced as the headquarters of the new Spanish Space Agency.
It beat off 20 rivals to get the government nod which was announced after Monday’s meeting of the Council of Ministers.
Government spokesperson, Isabel Rodriguez, said: “The priority in the award was to do with social and territorial cohesion.”
The Sevilla bid was backed by 298 entities and Rodriquez thanked all of the contenders for sending in their ‘numerous proposals’.
Sevilla mayor, Antonio Muñez Martinez, described the news as having the same impact as the city becoming the host of Expo 1992.
Sevilla was the first declared bidder to host the headquarters which will be Spain’s equivalent of America’s NASA and will attract around €4.5 billion of investment.
Another thing going for the city was that a building had already been identified as a potential HQ- described by Isabel Rodriguez as an ‘excellent venue’.
Requirements for all of the candidates included being less than an hour from an international airport with connections to Amsterdam, Rome, Frankfurt, Prague and Toulouse, which are the foreign destinations most frequently visited on business trips by agency staff.
Sevilla also has a strong aerospace presence with over 3,000 people working for Airbus at two plants and extensive research facilities.