The architects behind one of Birmingham’s most successful developments will be able to admire their work up close after deciding to make it their new home.
Newhall Street-based Associated Architects (AA) has signed a deal for 6,000 sq ft of Grade A office space at The Mailbox, almost a decade after it first started working on the award-winning mixed use scheme.
The deal will see the company move its team of 50, including the original team that worked on the design of The Mailbox, from its current office in the Colmore quarter to the unit at One Severn Street Square in the development.
With work starting in January 2009, the move to the development has provided an opportunity to create a bespoke office for the firm that incorporates flexible space to support future expansion plans.
Ian Standing, director at Associated Architects, said: “The space at One Severn Street Square gave us a unique opportunity to create a workspace that is truly innovative, sustainable and could be designed by our own team to match the operational needs and aspirations of the company.
“It made perfect commercial sense, as well as completing a sense of symmetry, to move back to the scheme that we originally designed. When we undertook the design of The Mailbox almost 10 years ago, we had a strong focus on flexibility from the outset and so when the need for expansion arose we knew that the scheme could offer us the unique environment we require.
“The design approach includes utilising the canal cooling system that we first designed, as well as displacement ventilation, raised floors and new elevations with full height glazing and a mezzanine meeting room area. We will now be able to truly practice what we preach to our clients when showcasing the design and functionality of our own space at the development.”
This collaborative deal will bring the original project team from The Mailbox together once again, with AA commissioned by Birmingham Development Company to design the fit-out of the office shell and BDC’s own construction arm BuildAbility fitting out the office accommodation.
Neil Edginton, director of BDC and BuildAbility, said: “The Mailbox continues to be the city’s most vibrant and varied destination, attracting new occupiers, retailers and consumers alike, and will only get better with the delivery of The Cube, our final phase of development here, in early 2010.
“This deal with AA however is testament to the longevity of The Mailbox design and is evidence that it is standing the test of time, with sustainable elements such as the canal cooling system that are even more relevant to today’s occupiers.”
As well as sustainable internal design, cycle spaces and showers have been factored into the plans, as well as improvement to the surrounding environment and public realm.
AA will be the second architects to take space at The Mailbox with MAKE, the company behind The Cube, also based on the lower level of the development.