The first building in Muse Developments’ new £100m business district for Chester has topped out.
One City Place marks the first of seven buildings and will contain 70,000 sq ft of BREEAM Excellent office space over six floors. The building is being constructed by Seddon and was designed by RHWL. The project manager is Ward Robinson. The 3.5-acre development area is between Chester Station and the Shropshire Union Canal.
Phil Mayall, development director of Muse Developments, said: “Reaching the topping out stage of the build marks a crucial phase in what is undoubtedly Chester’s most significant business development in the city centre in recent years.
“One City Place forms the first part of the brand new Central Business Quarter and lays the foundations for the next generation of successful business leaders in the city.”
The development was partly funded by the European Regional Development Fund and North West Evergreen Fund. Completion is due in November.
Finishing touches are being made to new public realm around the scheme which includes the renovation of grade 2 listed rail sheds linked to the train station. The public space will be known as the Carriage Shed.
Cllr Brian Clarke, cabinet member for economic development and infrastructure at Cheshire West & Chester Council, said: “Reaching this important point marks a new chapter in Chester’s history because it is one of the largest business developments in the city in recent years. We’ve invested more than £1.5m and secured a grant of £617,550 from the ERDF to build the Central Business Quarter public realm with the aim of driving further investment and employment opportunities into the city.”
Guy Butler, chairman of Chester Renaissance Development Board, the economic development agency, said: “One City Place and the surrounding Central Business Quarter is transforming the city’s commercial offering and is helping to broaden the vibrant business community, providing space ahead of other competing locations. It will be a hub for aspirational businesses and represents a new benchmark for office space in the city.”
Jonathan Seddon, managing director of Seddon, said: “This event celebrates an important moment for both the city of Chester and the building as it reaches its highest point. Generations to come will grow up with City Place as part of their landscape and may even work in one of its offices. I am delighted that Seddon has been part of this project and can say it has contributed to a major piece of Chester’s future.”
By 2028, it is planned that City Place will offer up to 440,000 square feet of office space in seven office blocks. The development is next to the new Waitrose store which opened in November 2014. A new hotel is also planned for the area, along with 200 homes, restaurants and leisure facilities.
Muse was granted planning permission for the first phase of the City Place development in March 2013 and work began in June 2014.