One of the Midlands' leading architectural practices is celebrating the first birthday of its Solihull office.
Stephen George and Partners, the third largest practice in the region, opened the branch in July to service projects and local clients
The firm, which also has offices in Leicester, Nottingham and Leeds, counts Prologis Developments, St Modwen Developments, Parkridge Homes, Catesby Properties and JJ Gallagher among its clients.
The branch's original team of four has steadily grown to 12 and there are plans for further expansion.
Since the Solihull office opened its client list has increased to include Infrastructure Investments and Multiplex.
Ian Yallop, a partner of the firm, said: "We have been very pleased with the response to our new Solihull office, not only from new and existing clients, but also from prospective members of staff who see our location as a huge benefit over commuting into central Birmingham.
"On opening, we wanted to create a ten-strong office over the first two years. We have achieved this in 12 months and are now planning a strategic growth of up to 25 staff over the next two years.
"We will shortly be opening discussions with UCE to offer scholarships to selected students to ensure that our growth also taps into the younger talent within the West Midlands."
Amongst the larger projects the firm is working on is the Llanwern Regeneration Site in Wales, one of the UK's largest brownfield sites, which SGP has been asked to masterplan.
The former Llanwern steel-works, which extends to 600 acres will be redeveloped to create a mixed community of 4,000 houses, community facilities and 2,000,000 sq ft of employment space and a 100-acre park. The scheme has been submitted for planning and work is due to start on-site later this year.
SGP have also submitted plans to turn the old Sideway Colliery, located three miles from Stoke city centre, into a new 64-acre distribution development for developer ProLogis.
The buildings have been designed by SGP to incorporate a number of environmen-tally friendly features in line with the Government's new policy on sustainable development.
These include special roof and floor materials to increase levels of natural lighting, and walls that absorb heat in order to reduce energy costs.