Three university buildings represent a rare opportunity for developers in the centre of Wolverhampton’s burgeoning cultural quarter.
Property consultant Donaldsons has been appointed by University of Wolverhampton to sell the MU building on Lichfield Street and the MR and MS buildings on Stafford Street.
Donaldsons associate Jonathan Robinson is optimistic about their prospects. "These are extremely well situated and attractive buildings, right in the heart of the city's up-and-coming cultural quarter and therefore lend themselves particularly well to mixed-use developments," he tells Business Property Review.
"We have received several such enquiries already.
"The area's close proximity to train and bus connections, plus the city's future plans which include upgrading key pedestrian routes, the creation of new quality public spaces and improvements to existing squares and sitting areas, will all enhance significantly the appeal and potential for economic growth."
Staff working at the three buildings will move to a new landmark #10 million building close to Molineux Stadium.
Roger Williams, University of Wolverhampton's director of facilities, says: "The disposal of these buildings is the latest phase in our New Horizons Masterplan.
"This has recently seen the opening of a #13 million new technology centre at our city centre campus, with more than 600 computers and specialist IT, engineering, design and media facilities.
"This latest development means that for the first time the university will have all of its professional and administrative staff together in one location.
"This will result in more efficient delivery of support services to students and other customers, as well as updated teaching and learning facilities."
Standing in a conservation area and with a floor area of 57,371 sq ft, the MU building is ripe for a revamp, with a basement, ground and five upper floors split into cellular office space, lecture hall and seminar rooms.
A small amount of car parking is contained in the basement area, which has access to Long Street at the rear. Close to the university campus, the building is described as suitable for A3 retail, leisure or mixed use.
The MR and MS buildings on Stafford Street, which are being sold as one lot, are next to the University campus.
Measuring in with floor areas of 7,900 sq ft and 13,133 sq ft, the buildings are close to the junction with Broad Street – subject of a Heritage Lottery Grant to regenerate the area.
The buildings, which date back to 1885, have seen service as local HQ for the South Staffordshire Regiment and as the Register Office.